Women want change - A Latin American and Caribbean Perspective

The "Beijing +25: A Latin American and Caribbean Perspective" conference was held, on 23 September convened by the NGO Committee on the Status of Women in Latin America and the Caribbean (CoNGO CSW LAC).

The NGO Committee on the Status of Women in Latin America and the Caribbean (CoNGO CSW LAC) was created in 2012, and consists of a forum for exchange and dialogue with civil society within the framework of the CSW (UN Commission on the Status of Women); it promotes and monitors the implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action, which is 25 years old.

Keeping in mind the 65th Conference on the Status of Women (CSW) of the United Nations Organisation, the conference allowed to update agendas, specify points of regional agreement, analyse the impact of the pandemic, analyse development models; women living in poverty and the public policies implemented and to be implemented to tackle gender inequalities and violence against women.

Some of the important conclusions emerged from the rich debate and presentations and the debate, these include:

  • Concern about the weakening of the multilateral system, expressed in the positions of the United States and in Latin America, Brazil.

  • Eradicate poverty: generating norms and policies that guarantee the economic empowerment of women; soft credits, allowances for women in situations of violence.

  • Promote tax reform: reviewing tax policies and lightening tax rates and burdens on women.

  • Promote Pay Equity Laws.

  • Promote 50/50 parity in public and private positions.

  • Close the digital divide. Promote education, both virtual and face-to-face, especially training for mothers who are heads of household; create incentive programmes to ensure that girls stay in school.

  • Promote the ratification and ensure compliance with the ILO Convention on Domestic Workers.

  • Promote the ratification of ILO Convention 190 and Recommendation 206 on violence and harassment in the world of work.

  • Prevention of child and adolescent pregnancy; child marriages and forced childbearing,

  • Guarantee access to justice in cases of violence and femicide.

  • Make alliances with feminist organisations.

  • Agenda 2030 and Sustainable Development Goals.

  • Investment in Public Care Services, promoting more equitable comprehensive care systems.

  • Generate state, collective and regional strategies in view of the post-pandemic and the deepening of the inequalities that have originated.

The conclusions are in line with the claim "Women want change", and the change we want is a development model that focuses on people's well-being, a tax system with a more equitable distribution of wealth and tax burdens, the elimination of violence against women and girls, with respect for the environment, with social justice and gender equity.

Participants included Mabel Bianco, Co-Chair of the CoNGO CSW LAC, María Noel Vaeza, UN Women's Regional Director for the Americas and the Caribbean; Mayra Jiménez, Minister of Women's Affairs of the Dominican Republic; Nadine Gasman, President of the National Women's Institute of Mexico; Maritza Perdomo, Technical Director of the National Women's Institute of Honduras; María Pía Molero, General Director of Gender Equality and Non-Discrimination of Peru; representatives of Public Services International (PSI), women from trade unions and other women's organisations; Rocío Rosero Garcés, member of the CoNGO CSW LAC in Ecuador, Mónica Novillo, Executive Director of the Bolivian Women's Coordinating Committee, and Julia Escalante de Haro, Regional Coordinator of the Latin American and Caribbean Committee for the Defense of Women's Rights (CLADEM), among others, also participated as moderators.