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[Press release] New data from seven countries in the Asia-Pacific region shows that, since the onset of the COVID-19 crisis, more women than men have left their paid jobs to provide essential services to their families, such as cleaning, caring for the sick and home-schooling children. Tighter household budgets also mean that many are experiencing food hardship, while water and fuel are becoming increasingly unaffordable. Furthermore, medical and hygiene products remain unavailable to many, while supply-chain issues and misinformation about vaccines have left more women than men unvaccinated.
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Andhika Chrisnayudhanto is Deputy for International Cooperation of the National Counter Terrorism Agency (BNPT) of Indonesia. He is the chair of the Senior Officials Meeting on Transnational Crime (SOMTC), Working Group on Counter Terrorism, of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). The Working Group on Counter Terrorism led in developing the ASEAN Bali Work Plan 2019-2025 on countering extremism. BNPT partnered with UN Women on the report, Gender Analysis of Violent Extremism and the Impact of COVID-19 on Peace and Security in ASEAN.
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Today, the Australian Government in collaboration with UN Women launched a new programme to tackle gender inequality in procurement systems.
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Alexandra Phelan is the deputy director of the Monash Gender, Peace and Security Centre at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. She recently led the research report, Gender Analysis on Violent Extremism and the Impact of COVID-19 on Peace and Security in ASEAN: Evidence-based Research for Policy. The report was done for the UN Women project, Empowering Women for Sustainable Peace: Preventing Violence and Promoting Social Cohesion in ASEAN.
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[Joint Press Release ] The countries and territories of the Pacific share some common energy challenges, but their success in meeting them has been uneven, particularly in rural areas. Addressing the shortfalls will require a renewed focus on women at every stage, as key and informed users, decision-makers, and also engineers of the region’s sustainable energy solutions.
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[Press Release] UN Women and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) signed an agreement today to continue working together to promote women’s equality and empowerment in Asia and the Pacific. The memorandum of understanding formally extending the partnership to March 2027 was signed in an online ceremony by the bank’s president, Masatsugu Asakawa, and the executive director of UN Women, Dr. Sima Bahous. The two sides had been cooperating since 2016 under an earlier 5-year agreement.
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On 6 January 2022, UN Women Indonesia supported the Government of Indonesia by hosting a Peace Festival (Kenduri Perdamaian) themed “build back better by protecting and empowering women and girls in social conflict".
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UN Women speaks to Kalpa Garg, feminist youth leader from India, about the importance of menstrual hygiene and sexual health awareness among adolescents. On International Day of the Girl Child, girls everywhere are rising to claim their rights, under the global theme, Digital Generation. Our Generation. To learn, grow, access skills and opportunities, girls must also have access to safe and equal spaces and comprehensive reproductive and sexual health.
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India’s vaccine drive has barely reached its significant population of displaced people, despite government initiatives. UN Women and UNHCR partnered up to conduct online dialogues with health experts, refugee communities and service providers to dispel myths, provide health information and how to access support.
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The event marked the culmination of a collaboration between UN Women Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific and the Embassies of France and Mexico in the context of the Generation Equality Forum which culminates in Paris from 30 June – 2 July 2021.
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Solomon Islands has high vulnerability to natural disasters such as cyclones, high tides, floods and earthquakes, and in 2020 the Pacific Island country experienced the combined impacts of Tropical Cyclone Harold and the COVID-19 crisis.
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What seemed like just another training, ended up being life-changing for 25-year-old Luisa Tiotio Afoa Sulu of Poutasi Falealili in Upolu, Samoa. Luisa first participated in the Women in Leadership in Samoa (WILS) Project’s vocational, language and leadership skills training for young women back in 2019, paving the way for a more confident and sustainable future for her and her family.
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[Press release] At the signing ceremony, Ms. Sharmeela Rassool, said, “Over the years, Pakistan has worked towards creating progressive legal frameworks to safeguard the rights of women and girls. The implementation of the law remains imperative for real change on the ground. Only a gender-sensitive, systematic and coordinated response mechanism from the state, the judiciary, legal community, and other stakeholders will be important to improve women and vulnerable communities’ access to justice.”
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Despite increases in the number of women at the highest levels of political power, widespread gender inequalities persist, according to the 2021 edition of the IPU–UN Women “Map of women in politics”. The data shows all-time highs for the number of countries with women Heads of State and/or Heads of Government, as well as for the global share of women ministers.
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Cesario da Silva is the executive director for the Association of People with Disability in Timor-Leste (ADTL). UN Women and the UN Human Rights Advisor’s Unit in Timor-Leste have been working closely with ADTL to support the rights of persons with disabilities and build an inclusive society, through the UN Partnership on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNPRPD) program. Amid immense and persistent challenges, Cesario has seen some progress for the community.
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Advances in LGBTIQ rights in Nepal began with a 2007 Supreme Court ruling to legally recognize a third gender category; audit all laws to identify those that discriminated against LGBT people; and open the door to consider same-sex marriage. In 2003, another Supreme Court decision said a person cannot be prohibited from cohabitating with someone of the same gender. But an analysis Prevention Collaborative did in July 2020 with support from UN Women Nepal said that, “Translating the Supreme Court rulings into a legal framework that guarantees inclusion and protections is slow-paced and hindered mainly by bureaucracy and dominant patriarchal institutional and social culture.”
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With COVID-19 shutdowns shining a light on gender inequality in the home, thousands of Thai men respond by embracing the #HeForSheAtHome campaign and taking on their fair share of household labor and standing up against violence.
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Thousands of women and children in quarantine centres across Viet Nam have been protected through accelerated safeguarding measures during the COVID-19 pandemic in a recent pioneering effort by the Government of Viet Nam, UNICEF and UN Women.
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UN Women is supporting dialogue between the Government and LGBTIQ groups to ensure that Nepal’s LGBTIQ people are properly counted in the 2021 population census. The last census, in 2011, tallied only 1,500 people identifying as LGBTIQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, intersex and queer/questioning). That was because the census lacked specific questions or a method to collect this data, and the nature of the census made many people afraid to come out.
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Numbers often tell a story, but when it comes to gender issues, data is often missing or misunderstood. Where gender data does exist, and it is presented effectively to paint a vivid picture of gaps and progress, it can be an important driver of development projects and initiatives for social change. To encourage and expand the use of data in reporting gender stories and accomplishments, 25 participants from eight countries in Asia-Pacific took part in a Workshop on communicating gender data: promoting better use and delivering impactful messages. Jointly organized by UN Women’s Gender Statistics team and the Statistical Office of the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP).