UN Committee on the Status of Women

BPW International is an active participant at the annual Commission on the Status of Women at the United Nations in New York where we take the opinions of our members to the highest level.

The principal output of the Commission on the  Status of Women is the  agreed  conclusions on priority themes set for each year. Agreed conclusions  contain an assessment of progress, as well as of gaps and challenges. In particular, they contain a set of concrete  recommendations for action by Governments, intergovernmental bodies and other  institutions, civil society actors and other relevant stakeholders, to be implemented  at the international, national, regional and local level.

In addition to the agreed conclusions, the  Commission also adopts a number of resolutions on a range of issues, including  the situation of and assistance to Palestinian women; and women, the girl child  and HIV and AIDS.

The annual report of the Commission is submitted  to the Economic and Social Council for adoption.

Click left to View the CSW61 Report from
BPW Australia Director of Policy, Elena Rorie.

Review the Agreed Conclusions from CSW61 below.

Commission on the Status of Women 61st Session 

CSW61 Theme: Women's economic empowerment in the changing world of work

The draft Agreed Conclusions issued 25 March 2017 reaffirmed the Beijing Platform for Action and the declarations of previous World Conferences on Women and reiterated the importance to the world’s women of underpinning Conventions and Protocols including the Convention for the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination Against Women and the Sustainable Development Goals.

The Agreed Conclusions recognise the structural barriers to women's economic empowerment and workplace engagement, and the impacts of: discrimination and gender inequalities; the feminisation of poverty; economic, financial and humanitarian crises; and dislocations, conflicts and disasters.  They recognise that women undertake a disproportionate share of family care duties and the need to engage men and boys as agents of change in addressing gender inequalities, and strongly condemn violence against women.

CSW61 focussed on concerns about the gender pay gap, occupational segregation, unequal working conditions and casual and inflexible work arrangements, and recognised the need for and value of investing in the advancement of women and girls.

The Commission on the Status of Women urged governments, the private sector and civil society to take a series of actions to address the identified challenges, focussed on 7 key aspects:

1.     Strengthening normative and legal frameworks
2.     Strengthening education, training and development
3.     Implementing economic and social policies for women's economic empowerment
4.     Addressing the growing informality of work and mobility of women workers
5.     Managing technological and digital change for women's empowerment
6.     Strengthening women's collective voice, leadership and decision-making
7.     Strengthening private sector role in women's economic empowerment

The key actions are detailed in the Full Report 


Dr Anu Mundkur, Associate Director of the Gender Consortium at Flinders University, was selected to join the Australian government delegation to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women held in New York in March.  BPW International conducts successful consultations, trainings and side events during the annual Commission on the Status of Women and seeks to influence the outcomes document.  Over recent years, a number of BPW Australia members have attended CSW in New York and contributed to the work of BPW International at this level.

On 24 May Anu presented the symposium Reflections on the UN Commission on the Status of Women.  
Link to the video: http://video.flinders.edu.au/events/ReflectionsOnTheUnitedNations_24May2016.cfm  

BPW Australia
Australian Federation of Business and Professional Women
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