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U.S. Statement at the High-Level Panel Discussion of the Human Rights Council on Human Rights Mainstreaming
March 3, 2015

“Enhancement of international cooperation in the field of human rights”
Statement by the Delegation of the United States
Delivered by Eric Richardson

UN Human Rights Council 28th Session

March 3, 2015

Thank you, Mr. President.

The United States gratefully acknowledges the participation of today’s distinguished speakers and panelists.  In particular, we welcome UN Women’s presentation on the vital role that women play in the enhancement of international cooperation in the field of human rights.

To effectively integrate a gender perspective into its work, the Human Rights Council must, and often does, account for the specific conditions of women and girls around the world.  It is well documented that women and girls suffer more frequently from hunger and inadequate medical care, are disadvantaged in the workplace, and are consistently more exposed to economic, political, and social peril than men and boys.  Recognizing these differing experiences is the first step in identifying tools to promote and protect the human rights of women, men, girls, and boys.

Additionally, it is important to discuss best practices for the promotion and protection of the human rights of individuals who face discrimination on the basis of their sexual orientation and gender identity.  In many parts of the world, we see increased levels of violence and discrimination towards these persons.  This also happens in our own country, such as the case of Matthew Shepard, a gay college student who was brutally murdered, which led to new national legislation on hate crimes.

The United States believes deeply in the universality of human rights. These universal human rights promote human dignity.  It is this belief that underlies our national concern for the education, health, and well-being of all people around the world.  Indeed, the promotion and protection of individual human rights – civil and political rights as well as economic, social, and cultural rights – greatly fosters development and is a critical part of sustainable development.  States that ensure political and civil liberties have societies that are stronger than those that deny these rights.

Thank you.