YOUNG FEMINISTS AT THE COMMITEE OF POPULATION AND DEVELOPMENT OF ECLAC
Mónica Novillo (DAWN team in Quito)
A team of 20 feminists from the global south (Argentina, Bolivia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Peru, Panama, Mexico, Barbados, Colombia, Jamaica, Dominican Republic, Uruguay, Paraguay and Brazil) were present at the Committee on Population and Development of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, ECLAC, which took place the 4 to 6 July in Quito, Ecuador.
This team was promoted by the alliance among DAWN (Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era), RESURJ (Realizing Sexual and Reproductive Justice) and the IWHC (International Women's Health Coalition). The team of young women articulated advocacy activities with feminist networks that promote the rights of women on the international and regional level, participating in the Civil Society Forum in which advocacy strategies towards CPD and governments were defined.
The presence of this team in the CPD of Quito is part of a set of efforts that DAWN, RESURJ and IWHC are doing to work in the review process of 20 years of the International Conference on Population and Development ICPD 2014, the Millennium Development Goals- MDGs and the 4th Conference of Women in Beijing 2015.
The Committee of Population and Development
Representatives of 33 member states and associates to the ECLAC have participated in the Committee of Population and Development to work on relevant issues on the matter of population, territory and sustainable development.
In the meeting, organized by the Ecuadorian government and the regional office of the UNFPA, some topics related to the follow up process of the Program of Action of the ICPD beyond 2014 in Latin America and the Caribbean, and the Latin-American Regional Plan of Action of Mexico, in which country members committed to facilitate the integration and exchange of national experiences in the elaboration of population policies.
Among others they have discussed topics such the round census of 2010, the main demographic tendencies of the region and their consequences, aging and the rights of older persons, indigenous peoples, Afro-descendants in Latin America and the international and internal migration.
The Civil Society Organizations issued a statement demanding immediate actions from governments to resume Cairo commitments, especially to ensure of the sexual and reproductive rights. (Click Here for the CSO Statement)
The Committee also issued two agreements, about changing the status of the CPD to become a Permanent Conference, assuring the inclusion of regular consultations with civil society in its Technical Commission.
This transition should be assumed by the governments of Ecuador in the Presidency, Mexico, Brazil, Uruguay, El Salvador, Belize, Jamaica, Bolivia in the vice presidencies and Cuba as rapporteur, also to take the challenge of advancing the Cairo Agenda.
The second agreement is a resolution that refers to the issues raised by the Committee on Population, Land and Sustainable Development.
Moving towards the Cairo Agenda
After an advocacy work with government delegations, the resolution includes commitments in relation to sexual and reproductive rights of all women and young people, comprehensive sexual and reproductive health with attention to equity, comprehensive sexuality education with human rights perspective and gender equality, access of adolescents and youth friendly and confidential services, and greater efforts to eliminate violence against women.
It also considers commitments on rights of migrants and their families, strengthening policies and services for those working in the care economy, equal access of women to labor markets and the guarantee for their sexual and reproductive rights, including access to sexual and reproductive health, among others.
The document lays particular emphasis on directing resources to finance the implementation of the Program of Action of the ICPD mandate and poses ECLAC and UNFPA to provide technical support to countries in the region in the review and monitoring of Cairo +20 process and instructs develop a regional report on achievements, gaps and emerging issues, that on this basis propose a regional agenda on population and development beyond 2014, to be discussed and presented at the regional Conference on Population and Development to be held in 2013. Link to the official document: http://www.eclac.cl/celade/noticias/paginas/2/46852/CEPD-Agreements-final.pdf