Media advisory: UN Women at the UN General Assembly 2019

Date: Friday, September 13, 2019

Media Inquiries: Media.team[at]unwomen.org

Starting 17 September, world leaders will gather for two weeks at the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA 74) in New York, to discuss and work together on the most pressing global issues, from gender equality to climate change and progress towards the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Time to reverse life-threatening trends of climate change is running out and the pushback against hard-won women’s rights has never been stronger. Therefore, this year’s UN General Assembly comes with heightened pressure to move swiftly to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals that Member States agreed upon in 2015. UNGA 74 will bring together Heads of State and Governments, private sector, civil society and international organizations in a series of high-level events to accelerate actions on these critical issues.

UNGA 74 comes in the lead up to the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action adopted in 1995, considered the most visionary agenda for women’s rights and empowerment. During UNGA 74, the Generation Equality campaign, launched by UN Women to commemorate the anniversary, will put the spotlight on gender equality. This multigenerational campaign, launched in May 2019, aims to reinvigorate the women’s rights agenda, catalyze a global dialogue and mobilize actions for gender equality across a range of critical issues, from equal pay and women’s leadership, to ending violence against women.

During the General Assembly, a UN Women co-sponsored high-level event co-hosted by France and Mexico, will call on world leaders to join the Biarritz Partnership to end discriminatory laws, which was presented at the G7 Summit in August 2019, and will pave the way toward the Generation Equality Forum taking place in Paris in July next year, with a kick-off Forum in Mexico in May 2020.. Meanwhile, another youth-focused event at the UN will give voice to the next generation of women’s rights advocates and present mentoring and transferring of leadership initiatives to support young women’s career advancement.

With global attention on the UN Secretary-General’s Climate Action Summit in New York on 23 September, amongst the  initiatives being put forth to address climate action, is one  on gender equality. The initiative calls for full inclusion and leadership of women and girls in efforts to address climate change as a catalytic force to make climate actions more effective. In parallel, a side-event co-organized by UN Women with partner countries will showcase concrete examples of initiatives led by women in climate change mitigation and adaptation.

Best practices to address human trafficking and all other forms of violence of violence against women, will also be discussed during the session.

Following the high-level week, the General Assembly will bring their attention to gender equality and the empowerment of women. From 4 to 7 October, the Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Affairs) will focus on follow-up to the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995; the situation of women and girls in rural areas; violence against women migrant workers; and the status of women in the UN system. The Second Committee (Economic and Financial) will focus on women in development on 16 October.  Six reports have been prepared by the Secretary-General (A/74/111; A/74/220; A/74/222; A/74/224; A/74/235; and A/74/279) on these issues.

Note to Media: All events are open to the media unless otherwise stated. Events held on UN premises are open only to UN-accredited media. More information at: https://www.un.org/en/media/accreditation/unga.shtml

UN Women-hosted or co-organized events include:

Generation Equality: Realizing women’s rights for an equal future - Promoting and supporting the leadership of young women within the UN

UN Women’s multigenerational campaign “Generation Equality: Realizing women’s rights for an equal future” brings together the next generation of women’s rights activists with the gender equality advocates and visionaries who were instrumental in creating the Beijing Platform for Action more than two decades ago. The event will serve as the activation of the campaign within the youth at the United Nations, and facilitate an intergenerational dialogue between young UN personnel, experts, private sector and high-level UN officials. Panelists and speakers include Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women; Virginia Marie "Ginni" Rometty, CEO of IBM; Jayathma Wickramanayake, UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, Minna Nurminen, Gender Parity Analyst, UN Women; Daniela Bas, Director of DESA’s Division for Inclusive Social Development; David Bearfield, Director of the Office of Human Resources, UNDP; Irem Tumer, Focal Point for Youth Leadership and Participation, UNFPA. More info and event flyer here.

WHEN: Monday, 16 September, 1.15–2.30 p.m.
WHERE: Conference Room 2, United Nations HQ, New York                   
RSVP: Link to RSVP

Good for Business, Good for Investing: a Canadian Perspective on the Women’s Empowerment Principles

Featuring speakers from UN Women, FinDev Canada, and the private sector, this event will showcase how UN Women and FinDev Canada are working together to promote the use of the Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEPs) and its associated Gender Gap Analysis Tool to foster gender equality and women’s economic empowerment in the private sector, including from an investor perspective. Canadian WEPs signatories will offer a private sector perspective on the WEPs framework and its transformative impact on business. The event will feature a fireside chat and a short panel discussion. Hosted by UN Women and FinDev Canada. Speakers include Meigan Terry, Senior Vice President of Global Communications, Culture and Social Enterprise, Scotiabank; Ana Santos, CFO, Schneider Electric; Trang Tran, Sustainable Finance Manager, JCM Power.

WHEN: Thursday, 19 September, 6–8.15 p.m.
WHERE: UN Women HQ, 220 East 42nd Street, New York. Please bring photo ID for registration purposes.

Solutions for Implementing Gender-Responsive Climate Action during Climate Action Summit 2019 – A Race We Can Win 

This event will advocate for the  integration of gender perspectives in climate action by showcasing on-the-ground and innovative climate change projects that put women at the centre of efforts. It will promote women's experiences, capabilities, and know-how concerning climate actions in moving to the implementation phase of the Paris Agreement and the SDGs. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women, and Teresa Ribero, Minister of Ecological Transition of Spain, will give the opening remarks, followed by a panel and an open round plenary session featuring speakers who will share transformative examples of gender-responsive climate actions. The event will close with remarks from Carlos Manuel Rodríguez, Minister of Environment and Energy of Costa Rica. Hosted by UN Women, UNSG Social and Political Drivers Coalition, Governments of Costa Rica, Spain and Peru. 

WHEN: Sunday, 22 September, 10–11.30 a.m.
WHERE: Conference Room 2, United Nations HQ, New York
RSVP: Please email Verona.collantes[at]unwomen.org to register for the event by  14 September

Gender Equality: from the Biarritz Partnership To the Beijing+25 Generation Equality Forum

This side-event, hosted by the French and Mexican Foreign Affairs Ministers, Jean-Yves Le Drian and Marcelo Ebrard, and co-sponsored by UN Women, will take stock of the gender equality outcomes of the Biarritz summit and the work of the Gender Equality Advisory Council (of which the Executive Director of UN Women is a member) and officially introduce the Generation Equality Forum in Mexico in May 2020 and in Paris in July 2020 to the international community. Convened by UN Women, co-hosted by France and Mexico,  and organized in close partnership with civil society, the Generation Equality Forum  in Mexico and Paris will celebrate the 25th anniversary of the adoption of the Beijing Platform for Action, with the aim of giving new impetus to the implementation of the outcomes of the Beijing Conference. Speakers at the high level event at the UNGA include Jean-Yves Le Drian and Marcelo Ebrard, the Foreign Affairs Ministers of France and Mexico; members of the G7 Gender Equality Advisory Council Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women, Katja Iversen, President of Women Deliver, and Rula Jebreal, foreign policy analyst and journalist; as well as Dr. Denis Mukwege, world-renowned gynaecologist, human rights activist and Nobel Peace laureate; Marlène Schiappa, Minister of State for Gender Equality and the Fight against Discrimination, France; and Nadine Gasman, President of Inmujeres Mexico.

WHEN: Monday, 23 September, 6.30–8 p.m.
WHERE:  Conference Room 3, United Nations HQ, New York
INFORMATION FOR MEDIA: The event will be webcast live at UNWomen.org

‘Women Count Data Hub' goes Live

This brand new educational and interactive data lab will serve as an introductory demonstration of the Women Count data hub, its data and its potential. The goal of the hub is to improve access to gender data to inform policy and advocacy, by providing all the gender indicators of the SDGs in one place. The hub will also include stories and visualization, and is hosted by UN Women’s gender data programme, Women Count.

WHEN: Tuesday, 24 September, 3–5 p.m.
WHERE: Lightbox, 248 West 37th Street, New York
RSVP: https://bit.ly/2lLTIIT

Champions for Generation Equality

This high-level event is a presentation platform for the group of female Leaders that will be championing the UN Women Generation Equality campaign. The group consists of over 280 female leaders from different sectors of leadership, and all parts of the world and age groups. They  will advocate for and lend their voice, impact and power to the campaign. Speakers include Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women; Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović, President of Croatia and Chair of the Council of Women World Leaders; and Katrin Jakobsdottir, Prime Minister of Iceland. Hosted by UN Women and the Council of Women World Leaders (CWWL). 

WHEN: Wednesday, 25 September, 3–3.45 p.m.
WHERE: ECOSOC Chamber, United Nations HQ, New York
RSVP: Please RSVP using this link by 23 September, 10 a.m

Countering Impunity to End Trafficking in Persons

Trafficking in persons is a serious crime and a grave violation of human rights. The UNODC Global Report 2018 highlights that, although the number of detected victims worldwide has increased, prosecutions and convictions rates of traffickers remain very low globally with legal impunity being widespread. Prosecutions of those who knowingly use goods and services provided by victims of trafficking are almost non-existent. The expert panel will address the current state of affairs and explore what can be done to make countering impunity a cornerstone of global and regional efforts to end trafficking. The event is being hosted by the Inter-Agency Coordination Group Against Trafficking in Persons (ICAT), co-chaired by UN Women and OSCE 2019-2020. Speakers include: Valiant Richey, OSCE Special Representative and Coordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings; Kalliopi Mingeirou, Chief, Ending Violence against Women, UN Women; Dr. Myria Vassiliadou, EU Anti-Trafficking Co-ordinator; Kevin Hyland, GRETA member and Senior Advisor to the Santa Marta Group ; Shandra Woworuntu, Founder and Director, Mentari Survivor Empowerment Program Inc. Moderated by Simone Monasebian, Director UNODC New York Liaison Office. Featuring an exhibition from renowned international humanitarian photographer Lisa Kristine: From the Frontlines of Human Trafficking.

WHEN: Wednesday, 25 September, 6–7.30 p.m.
WHERE: City Bar Justice Centre, 42 West 44th St, New York
RSVP: To RSVP, please email michelle.silva[at]unwomen.org by 5pm, 19 September.

Women, Peace and Security: Towards Full Participation

This WPS Focal Points Network event will bring together Member States, regional organizations, UN agencies and civil society organizations to discuss the implementation of the women, peace and security (WPS) agenda ahead of the 20-year anniversary of Security Council 1325 in 2020, with a focus on women’s participation in peace and security and the role of regional economic communities. Featuring government ministers, heads of regional and international organizations and national focal points on WPS, this event will showcase new WPS commitments and progress made on existing ones. There will be a ministerial segment followed by a panel and open discussion. Hosted by Namibia, Germany, Canada, Uruguay and UN Women. Speakers include Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, Deputy Prime Minister of Namibia, Heiko Maas, Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs of Germany, Ariel Bergamino, Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs of Uruguay, Pascale Baeriswyl, State Secretary of the Federal Department for Foreign Affairs of the Swiss Confederation, Fernando Martín Valenzuela Marzo, Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs of Spain, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women.

WHEN: Wednesday, 25 September, 6.30–8.00 p.m.
WHERE: Conference Room 11, United Nations HQ, New York
RSVP: Please RSVP using this link by 20 September. For enquiries, please email: WPSfocalpointsnetwork[at]unwomen.org.

Promoting multi-agency responses to combat trafficking in persons: Accomplishments and milestone initiatives of the UN Inter-agency Coordination Group Against Trafficking in Persons

This event, hosted by the Permanent Mission of Greece, will feature a high-level panel presenting the achievements and strategic initiatives of the UN Interagency Coordination Group against Trafficking in Persons (ICAT), including under its 2019-2020 UN Women-OSCE co-chairpersonship. By highlighting its work, particularly in the area of technology, forced labor, procurement and supply chains, the event will provide an opportunity to discuss how ICAT can further support collaborative efforts between the UN system, Member States, NGOs and practitioners in the fight against trafficking in persons. 

WHEN: Thursday, 26 September, 4–5.30 p.m.
WHERE: Conference Room A, United Nations HQ, New York
RSVP: To RSVP, please email michelle.silva[at]unwomen.org by 20 September. Information on where to pick up your pass on the day of the event will be sent to you after registration. For any other inquiry, please email christodoulidis.stavros[at]mfa.gr. 

EU-UN Spotlight Initiative high-level event: Progress and perspectives on eliminating violence against women and girls

The high-level event will Illustrate early results and achievements of Spotlight Initiative programmes, demonstrate the value of continued EU-UN investments, showcase the strong partnership between civil society, national governments and regional institutions, and provide a platform for public support to achieve gender equality and end all forms of violence against women and girls. The event will feature remarks from several heads of state, UN DSG Amina Mohammed, EU HRVP Federica Mogherini, EU Commissioner Neven Mimica, UNFPA ED Natalia Kanem, UN Women Goodwill Ambassador Jaha Dukureh, UNFPA Goodwill Ambassador Ashley Judd, Spotlight Champion Cecilia Suarez and many other eminent persons.

WHEN: Thursday, 26 September, 4.30–6.30 p.m.
WHERE: ECOSOC Chamber, United Nations HQ, New York
RSVP:Please RSVP at https://bit.ly/SpotlightUNGA74 (deadline is 20 September)

Note to media

Social media

View our social media package in English, Spanish and French produced in the context of the #UNGA: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/9loc9e3dg2d2cwz/AADBFzn1q3k4wSbzUlNr9HaNa?dl=0. In addition to general #UNGA content, we focus on #ClimateAction, the #GlobalGoals, and our #GenerationEquality campaign. Feel free to share and use on your accounts!

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