Just 11 of the 196 Speakers at This Year’s UN General Assembly Are Women

The first woman scheduled to speak at this year’s opening session of the United Nations General Assembly is 53rd on the list of about 119 heads of state—President Zuzana Caputova of Slovakia—delivering her remarks on Sept. 23.

This year’s General Assembly coincides with the 25th anniversary of the Fourth World Conference on Women, held in Beijing. It’s therefore especially painful for some countries that so few women in total—11, it appears, so far—are scheduled to speak at the “high-level” session, from Sept. 22-29.

Beijing: 25 Years Later

Adopted in 1995, the U.N.’s Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action shaped aspirations for women’s equality in the 21st century—and no amount of resistance or repression since has been able to reverse its momentum.

Take Action! Trump Administration Proposes Harmful Regression to USAID Gender Equality Policy

Last week, United States Agency for International Development (USAID) released their draft of a new USAID Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment Policy.

The current draft of the policy is out of touch with current global best practices, and contains inaccurate and problematic elements that may stall or even reverse progress towards gender equality globally.

TAKE ACTION: USAID has opened up an extremely brief comment period on the policy, requiring that all comments be submitted by Tuesday, August 25.

Another Egregious Attack on Reproductive Health by Trump Administration

John Barsa, administrator for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), has asked for all references to sexual and reproductive health to be removed from the UN’s Global Humanitarian Response Plan. Barsa claims the U.N. is using the pandemic to advance access to abortion by including it as an “essential” health service.

Here’s the thing: Abortion is essential health care —including during a pandemic.