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Women Mobilize at Rio+20: Demanding a Just and Sustainable Future

Sascha Gabizon (WECF) says, “Rio+20 could be our last chance to mobilize world leaders and civil society to assure a real paradigm shift away from greed and unsustainable growth towards societies based on human rights and gender equality”

13.06.2012 | Women's Major Group Rio+20





RIO DE JANEIRO (June 13) – The voices of a diverse and powerful collective of over 200 organizations that comprise the Women’s Major Group must be heard at Rio+20.  Sascha Gabizon of Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF) and one of the core organisers of the Women’s Major Group says, “Rio+20 could be our last chance to mobilize world leaders and civil society to assure a real paradigm shift away from greed and unsustainable growth towards societies based on human rights and gender equality”

DOWNLOAD THE PRESS RELEASE HERE (PDF)
 
“Governments must reaffirm not roll back hard won agreement on women’s human rights. Development is not sustainable if governments fail to address the disproportionate effects of the economic and ecological crisis on women’s rights and livelihoods,” says Anita Nayar of Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN).  “Success at Rio can only be measured by true commitment to rights, equity, and financial resources for implementation,” says Eleanor Blomstrom of the Women's Environment Development Organization (WEDO).

Through partnership with UN Women and support from SustainLabour and GIZ Germany, the Women’s Major Group has brought 25 grassroots women and policy activists to follow the negotiations and present best practices and lessons learned during a series of side events.  “We are all coming here with stories of what’s actually happening on the ground, with examples of what works and what hasn’t worked, where there has been progress and where gaps still exist,” says Sheila Oparaocha of International Network for Gender and Sustainable Energy (Energia).

Over 1000 women have responded to the Women’s Major Group global survey to bring the perspectives of women to Rio+20.  Results will inform advocacy at Rio and be presented to Ms. Michelle Bachelet, the Executive Director of UN Women, alongside key decision makers during UN Women’s June 19th Women Leaders Forum. 

Over the past two years the Women’s Major Group has engage actively in the inter-governmental process, hosting side events, convening a daily women’s caucus, and building networks and collective actions.  Over 1500+ individuals have engaged with the Women’s Major Group through social media on Twitter and Facebook, and over 500 activists, from the age of 18 to 92 have joined the “Women Creating a Sustainable Future” online community by sharing blogs, videos and photos on the future they want. 

In Rio the Women’s Major Group has a full schedule of activities and events from June 13 to 22, creating spaces for action, dialogue, learning, networking and innovation.  For a full listing please visit http://women-rio20.ning.com/forum/topics/women-s-major-group-calendar-of-related-events
 
KEY EVENTS
Women’s Caucus
Daily, 3-4pm – Rio Centro Pavilion T Room 1
Organized by the Women’s Major Group and open to all women and men working toward action on gender-related aspects of sustainable development.
 
Women’s Major Group Exhibit Booth
Daily, All Day—Rio Centro (as off the end of the week)
 
Protecting our first environment - harmful chemicals and health
Monday, 13 June 2012, 13:15 - 14:45 - Barra Arena, UN2
 
Women's Resistance and Resilience
Friday, 15 June 2012, 9:30am-11:00am -- Rio Centro, T-9
 
Women's Major Group Rio+20 Best Practice Awards Ceremony
Thursday, 21 June 2012, 3:00pm-5:00pm -- Rio Centro, T-1
 
Roots of Equity: what rights and safeguards do women need who are dependent for their livelihoods on forest, biodiversity and subsistence farmers
Friday, 22 June 2012, 1:15pm-2:45pm -- Barra Arena, UN2
 
The Women’s Major Group, comprised of over 200 organizations, is facilitated by three Organizing Partners – Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF), Voices of African Mothers (VAM), and Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN). It is supported by core members including, the International Network on Gender and Sustainable Energy (ENERGIA), Global Forest Coalition, and Women’s Environment Development Organization (WEDO). 

For more information please see:
Website: www.women-rio20.ning.com
Twitter: @Women_Rio20
Facebook: Women on the Road to Rio+20

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contacts:
Cai Yiping, DAWN, yiping@dawnnet.org
Bridget Burns, WEDO, bridget@wedo.org