The month of March is very busy and includes the important March for Gender Equality and Women's Rights on International Women's Day, March 8, 2015.
Photo courtesy of Nancy Cohen-Koan
The March for Gender Equality and Women's Rights is being organized by UN Women in collaboration with the City of New York, NGO-CSW, the Working Group on Girls, the Man Up Campaign and the UN Women for Peace Association.
The march will take place on International Women's Day (March 8) and commemorate the 20-year anniversary of the Fourth World Conference on Women and the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action. This event will celebrate the achievements women and girls have made around the world since 1995. It will also be an opportunity to underscore the need for political commitment to accelerate action to achieve gender equality by 2030.
We will start at the Dag Hammarskjold Plaza (47th Street and 2nd Avenue) at 2:30 p.m. and end at Times Square (42nd Street and 7th Avenue) at 5:00 p.m.
The march will be divided into three parts:
A 1.5-hour march from Dag Hammarskjold to Times Square. The march will be a celebration that will include singing, marching, raising slogans, and showing solidarity for gender equality and women's rights. At the same time, the march will help point out the existing gaps and barriers to achieving gender equality.
An evocative closing at Times Square. The 30-minute program will consist of raising a collective torch to showcase intergenerational partnership. The program will bring together Ambassador Gertrude Mongella, the UN Women Executive Director, the First Lady of New York, the UN Secretary General (TBD) and others. The program will conclude with a song and a call to achieve gender equality by 2030.
- A lively start at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza. The march will be flagged off by the UN Women Executive Director following a short program of 30 minutes. Eminent celebrities, a New York indigenous women's group, and a girls' dance troupe are on the programme.
In terms of the choreography of the march, the participants will be divided into 12 blocks representing the 12 critical areas of concern in the Beijing +20 Platform for Action. These 12 blocks will be led by the first block that will represent the overall theme of Beijing+20 and Planet 50-50: Step It Up for Gender Equality - March for Gender Equality and Women's Rights.
The 12 critical areas of concern are as follows:
- Women and the environment
- Women in power and decision-making
- The girl child
- Women and the economy
- Women and poverty
- Violence against women
- Human rights of women
- Education and training of women
- Institutional mechanisms for the advancement of women
- Women and health
- Women and the media
- Women and armed conflict
We are preparing 13 banners in addition to many placards, posters, and signs calling for gender equality and women's rights. We also encourage your organizations to bring your messages to the event, and messages and materials for campaigns regarding Beijing+20, gender equality and women and girls' empowerment
Extensive outreach and mobilization is underway with an intention to bring between 10,000 and 20,000 people to march for gender equality. The last march of this magnitude for gender equality in New York City took place in the 1970s.
Everyone is invited to join the march and to spread the word far and wide using the hashtags #Beijing20 and #genderequalitymarch. Go to @UN_Women for coverage of the march.
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