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Since 1980, Hadassah has shown its strong support for ratification of CEDAW and affirmed in 1994 that “it is imperative that the United States, a leader in the human rights arena and an active party in drafting the document, honor its international commitments and ratify the Convention . . .” Hadassah is also a proud member of the CEDAW Task Force of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights.
On December 18, 1979, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). The first international treaty to address women’s rights as human rights, it comprehensively promotes gender equality and women’s full participation in society and condemns all forms of discrimination against women. Close to becoming universal, 186 countries have ratified the Convention. The U.S. is one of only six countries—and the only democracy—that has not ratified CEDAW. Hadassah and the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) consider universal ratification necessary for promoting women’s human rights.
Countries that have ratified CEDAW commit themselves to the following:
- Take measures to ensure women can enjoy basic human rights and fundamental freedoms
- Establish judicial procedures to ensure the effective protection of the rights of women
- Take appropriate measures to eliminate discrimination against women by persons, organizations or enterprises
- Submit national reports every four years on measures they have taken to comply with the treaty to protect and promote the rights of women in their country.
It is time for the U.S. government to show the international community that it stands unequivocally for the rights of women.
Urge your Senators to work for the ratification of CEDAW!
For additional information about the campaign to ratify CEDAW, visit www.womenstreaty.org.
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