ADVOCACY AT THE UN LEVEL
Women for Women’s Human Rights (WWHR) - New Ways is an active participant in UN mechanisms and processes and in international women’s solidarity movements and forums. Since we believe that linking the local, national, regional and international contexts and carrying the experience and progress from one to the other is essential for the advancement of rights, we participate in UN processes with the aim of both adequately representing our struggle and demands on the local, national, and regional contexts at the UN level, and contributing to the advancement of women’s and human rights at the international levels. On the international platform, WWHR operates in various ways ranging from participating in or initiating international action through to advocacy and lobbying, from bridging national and international fields to joining or establishing support networks.
WWHR – New Ways has assumed an leading role in advocacy at the UN for the advancement of women’s human rights in Turkey through processes like CEDAW and Beijing +5, and also for the promotion of sexaul and reproductive rights on the international and regional levels through processes like ICPD +10, Beijing +10 and UNGASS with the Coalition for Sexual and Bodily Rights in Muslim Societies.
We have submitted two shadow reports for Turkey’s periodic country reviews by CEDAW (1997 and 2005) and lobbied the CEDAW Committee and Turkey’s Government Delegations during the review sessions. The analysis and demands put forth in our shadow reports have been included in the Committee’s concluding comments, which we have used successfully on the national level to lobby the State for the advancement of women’s human rights in Turkey. WWHR- New Ways has served on the government delegations of Turkey in processes live Beijing +5, Beijing +10 and the 50th Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).
Since 2004, the Coalition for Sexual and Bodily Rights in Muslim Societies has been actively partaking in Un processes to lobby the international community and their governments for the advancement of sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR). Since NGO participation and visibility from our regions is conventionally low at the UN level, our efforts were further significant in paving the way for increased participation in global advocacy, in particular in the domain of SRHR. We have been able to effectively lobby government delegations from the regions on many issues, and publicly declare progressive views and determined advocacy efforts to promote SRHR, thus challenging the conservative approaches and asserting alternative views from the region. Through the work of strong NGO delegations at process like ICPD + 10, Beijing+10 and UNGASS, we have succeeded in challenging the alliances of conservative Muslim and Christian governments, prevented the inclusion of backward* language in outcome documents, and presented our demands for the recognition of sexual and bodily rights as human rights at the international level. NGO statements we have issued at meetings like ESCWA, Beijing +10, and UNGASS have been acclaimed as some of the most progressive statements in these processes.