NEWS FROM THE CELTIC LEAGUE
UK PRESSED ON FAILURE TO CONSULT OVER CEDAW REPORT
The United Kingdom is due to report to the United Nations Committee on theElimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) in May 2011. The report will cover the UK, Overseas Territories and the Crown Dependencies
The Celtic League have asked Equalities Minister, Theresa May, why despite being asked the UK fails to disseminate information about the work of CEDAW there is no engagement with interested bodies such as NGOs in the Dependencies:
“Rt Hon Theresa May MP
Minister for Women and Equalities
The seventh periodic report is due to be submitted by the United Kingdom government to the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) in May 2011.
I note that in its concluding observations on the fifth and sixth periodic reports CEDAW observed at para 263:
“The Committee underlines that the principal responsibility for implementation of the Convention lies with the Government of the United Kingdom. Reiterating its recommendation of 1999, the Committee calls for the development and enactment of a unified, comprehensive and overarching national strategy and policy for the implementation of the Convention throughout the United Kingdom, including its Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies. It calls upon the State party to undertake all necessary measures to ensure the full
implementation of this strategy in a consistent and coherent manner across its territory, including through the establishment of an effective coordination and monitoring mechanism on implementation, and to provide comprehensive information on steps and measures taken in this regard in its next periodic report. In particular, the Committee recommends that the State party provide adequate= technical and financial assistance to its Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies for the implementation of the Convention. In line with article 24 of the Convention and article 13 of its Optional Protocol, the Committee calls upon the State party to take concrete measures to make these two human rights instruments widely known. In this respect, them Committee requests the State party to undertake public awareness and training
programmes on the Convention and its Optional Protocol, as well as on the Committee’s general recommendations. It also requests the State party to raiseawareness among women of their rights under the Convention and the communications and inquiry procedures provided by its Optional Protocol. It further requests the State party to ensure that the Convention and its Optional Protocol, as well as the Committee’s general recommendations, and the views adopted on individual communications, are made an integral part of educational curricula, including for legal education and the training of judicial officers, judges, lawyers and prosecutors.”
Can you advise what steps have been made by the United Kingdom to give effect to these recommendations in relation to the Isle of Man?
At para 273 the Committee observes:
“The Committee recommends that the State party ensure that NGOs are able to meffectively contribute to the continuing implementation of the Convention. It urges the State party to provide increased and sustained funding to NGOs and other civil society groups involved in the area of women’s rights. It recommends that the State party ensure that the interpretation and application of the Gender Equality Duty does not have a negative impact on the provision of “women-only” services or restrict the activities of women’s organizations. It also recommends that the State party conduct an impact assessment of its “commissioning” frameworks on the funding of women’s organizations. The Committee requests the State party to include information on the funding of NGOs and women’s organizations in its next periodic report.”
Can you advise if you are aware of any attempt by the UK or Isle of Man governments to `ensure that NGOs are able to effectively contribute to the continued implementation of the Convention?
Can you also advise if there has been any attempt at all by the UK or Isle of Man government to actively involve NGOs in discussions on the Convention?
Has any attempt been made by the State Party to seek the views of NGOs in the dependencies ahead of its next periodic report in May 2011?
Finally, CEDAW also says at paragraph 300:
The Committee requests the wide dissemination in the United Kingdom, including in its Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies, of the present concluding observations in order to make the people, including government officials, politicians, parliamentarians and women’s and human rights organizations, aware of the measures that have been taken to ensure de jure and de facto equality of women, as well as the further steps that are required in this regard. It also requests the State party to continue to strengthen the dissemination, in particular to women’s and human rights organizations, of the Convention, its Optional Protocol, the Committee’s general recommendations, the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action and the outcome of the twenty-third special session of the General Assembly, entitled “Women 2000: gender equality, development and peace for the twenty-first century”.
Can you advise what tangible efforts have been made by the UK government to ensure that the deliberations of CEDAW were widely disseminated in both the UK, overseas territories and the dependencies (including the Isle of Man)?
J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information
The most recent CEDAW report by the United Kingdom can be found on these pages
J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information
The Celtic League has branches in the six Celtic Countries. It works to promote cooperation between these countries and campaigns on a
broad range of political, cultural and environmental matters. It highlights human rights abuse, monitors all military activity and focuses on
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