Tijdens de plenaire vergadering van de Verenigde Naties, mocht ik als vice-voorzitster van EPF een tussenkomst voorbereiden. Ik wil parlementsleden wereldwijd erop attent maken dat er wel degelijk een sense of urgency is wanneer het aankomt op seksuele en reproductieve rechten van vrouwen en meisjes. Sinds 1990 gaan we erop vooruit, maar 3% vooruitgang is niet genoeg. Een grotere bewustwording en bijdrage van nationale parlementen is nodig.

Lees mijn bijdrage hier (in het Engels):

Statement on behalf of the European Parliamentary Forum on Population and Development by Senator Petra De Sutter, Belgium
61st Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women “Women’s Economic Empowerment in the Changing World of Work” – 13-24 March 2017

Creating a world where women and girls enjoy and realize their human rights is one of the most urgent challenges of this century. Women’s and girls’ empowerment is increasingly recognized by national governments and the international community as the most valuable economic and social investment.

It illustrates the linkages between rights-based human capital development, health, education and economic growth. We now must harvest the benefits of investing in the full potential of women and girls. With this respect, scaling up coverage of maternal and newborn health, child health and family planning is of the utmost importance.

We, Members of Parliament must raise national and international political priority of women’s and girls’ empowerment. We need to address the challenge of identifying people who are most vulnerable and at risk of exclusion.

We, Members of Parliament must also acknowledge that so far only limited progress has been made in meeting the unmet need for family planning worldwide. The unmet need is only 3 percent lower in 2015 than in 1990. Reducing the gap between contraceptive use and total demand is relevant for countries in all regions. We need to accelerate investment in the provision of voluntary and high-quality family planning information, counselling, contraceptives and services for all.

We, Members of Parliament call you to acknowledge the persistent inequalities and discrimination, which hamper the empowerment for women and girls. We urge you to recognize that health is a precondition for economic and social development, and that sexual and reproductive health and rights are central to the realization of social justice and to the achievement of global, regional and national sustainable development.

In addition, we, Members of Parliament commit to further advocate on the importance of women’s and girls’ empowerment with specific attention to vulnerability factors, such as income, age, ethnic origin, disability, migratory status, sexual orientation and gender identity, marital status, HIV status and other characteristics relevant in national contexts for policy formulation. New partnerships with our national and regional parliaments, civil society, unions, private sector and academia must be further explored.

Finally, we, Members of Parliament urge you to recognize the importance of parliamentarians and parliamentary networks to advance gender equality and women’s empowerment in the 2030 agenda for sustainable development and, in this respect, the work of your Commission. Involving parliamentarians to improve learning and exchange between governments, UN agencies, civil society and other stakeholders need to be increased and highlighted.

In conclusion, we ask you to explicitly encourage Members of Parliament to join their national delegations, make statements and contribute to the submission of national reports, including on progress in their respective parliaments on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, as part of the general debate on national experience in matters of gender equality and women’s and girls’ empowerment.

On behalf of the EPF Parliamentary delegation, I thank you very much for your attention.