Friday, 29 August 2014

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Tech Tactics: Tweets and tags towards equality

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26 May 2014 – Men and women are still far from equal treatment in the world. Great changes have been made, however much more progress remains. UN Women, the United Nation’s entity charged with promoting gender equality, have launched a major year-long campaign of activities promoting equality.

The campaign aims to mobilize governments and citizens alike to picture a world where gender equality is a reality and to join a global conversation on empowering women to empower humanity. The pursuit of gender equality, and empowering women, is among the 2015 Millennium Development Goals, and as the set date rapidly approaches, actions must intensify to reach the goals set forth.

The campaign will kick off with an all-day globe-spanning Tweetathon. Participating groups will include the UN, Lean In, the World YWCA, the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, the European Women’s Lobby, the Women’s Media Centre, and other regional and national experts.

The campaign, relying heavily on information technology to disseminate its message, will unveil a global information hub featuring diverse voices, testimonies of personal experiences and achievements, and celebrity champions. The HeforShe web platform will spotlight prominent men standing up to end violence against women and advance equality. UN Women will support engagement through its network of country offices and release an interactive Facebook app, “Close the Gap”.

Women still suffer from discrimination in many parts of the world, especially in professional settings. Along with discrimination women face many dangers, especially in developing countries. In the Democratic Republic of Congo, rape is widespread and used as a weapon of war. However, the shadow of domestic abuse hovers over women across the world, regardless of country or level of development, indeed women account for 70% of the victims of homicides stemming from domestic violence.

In its announcement of the upcoming campaign, UN Women says that during the past two decades, much progress has been made in women’s legal rights, educational achievements, and participation in public life.

It also stresses that much still remains to be done to address gender wage gaps and unequal opportunities, low representation of women in leadership in public office and the private sector, child marriage, rampant violence and other violations against women and girls.

“Today I call on everyone to be part of the solution,” said Ms Mlambo-Ngcuka Executive Director of the UN Entity for Gender Equality and Empowerment of Women at a press conference on 22 May.

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