Joint Statement on International Women’s Day

The United States was pleased to join the co-sponsors of the following joint statement to the United Nations Human Rights Council.

Statement at the occasion of International Women’s Day

Delivered by by Ambassador Socorro Flores Liera
Permanent Representative of Mexico
on behalf of Finland, Mexico and 60 States

46th session of the Human Rights Council
March 8th, 2021

Thank you Madam President,

I have the honor to deliver this statement on the occasion of International Women’s Day on behalf of Finland, Mexico and 60 States.

One of the greatest human rights challenges is achieving substantive gender equality. Women and girls frequently face multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination and have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic.

Women play a key role in the response to the pandemic, providing essential medical care and other services, and keeping communities going while lockdowns are enforced. Women represent 70 percent of the health and social sector workforce globally. While they have mainly received symbolic recognition, this recognition should also be reflected in the reduction of the gender pay gap.

We have to ensure that the additional burdens women and girls carry during this pandemic do not result in increased exposition to violence and discrimination in public and private life, and to disproportionate increase in unpaid care and home schooling. Women and girls’ rights must continue to be protected, and not enough attention and resources are being directed to address these problems.

Women and girls have faced a roll back on human rights in general and on sexual and reproductive health and rights in particular. In the midst of the crisis, sexual and reproductive health services remain essential, and should be part of national plans dealing with the COVID pandemic.

During these challenging times, feminist movements and organisations have remained active and vocal, online and offline, dismantling patriarchal systems and their manifestations, such as gender-based violence and discrimination.. Today we salute and pay respect to all the courageous feminist movements, organisations and women human rights defenders around the world. We do see you and stand with you.

It is essential to guarantee women and girls’ meaningful participation and leadership in responding to the pandemic. We welcome that this year the Commission on the Status of Women’s priority theme is women’s full and effective participation and decision-making in public life. The only effective response to the pandemic is one that has a gender perspective and facilitates a gender-responsive recovery. In this spirit, we commend the organization of the Generation Equality Forum this year, convened by UN-Women and co-chaired by France and Mexico.

Madam President,

There is an urgent need to accelerate the promotion and protection of all women and girls’ rights. This crisis is an opportunity to address historical and structural inequalities and shortcomings that continue to hold women and girls back, and to re-imagine and transform societies. The Human Rights Council must be a space where all feminist voices can mobilize action and political will to achieve irreversible gender equality.

Thank you.

Co-sponsors:

1. Albania
2. Andorra
3. Argentina
4. Armenia
5. Australia
6. Austria
7. Belgium
8. Botswana
9. Bulgaria
10. Canada
11. Chile
12. Colombia
13. Costa Rica
14. Croatia
15. Cyprus
16. Czech Republic
17. Denmark
18. Ecuador
19. Estonia
20. Fiji
21. Finland
22. France
23. Germany
24. Georgia
25. Greece
26. Iceland
27. Ireland
28. Israel
29. Italy
30. Japan
31. Kazakhstan
32. Latvia
33. Liechtenstein
34. Lithuania
35. Luxembourg
36. Malaysia
37. Malta
38. Mexico
39. Moldova
40. Monaco
41. Montenegro
42. Nepal
43. Netherlands
44. New Zealand
45. North Macedonia
46. Norway
47. Palestine
48. Panama
49. Peru
50. Philippines
51. Portugal
52. Romania
53. Slovakia
54. Slovenia
55. Spain
56. Sweden
57. Switzerland
58. Thailand
59. Ukraine
60. United Kingdom
61. United States
62. Uruguay