Movement for a CEDAW General Recommendation on Indigenous Women
The Women’s Human Rights Institute (WHRI) is part of an alliance of organizations that together embarked on a process to campaign for the CEDAW Committee to adopt a General Recommendation on Indigenous Women. Initially known as the Indigenous Women’s Alliance for CEDAW, this coalition grew out of the synergy between the existing work of the collaborating organizations and the collective knowledge-building undertaken together to explore the ways in which CEDAW and women’s human rights tools and standards could be mobilized to better support the struggles of indigenous women.
The WHRI supports and directly engages in advocacy strategies that organically emerge from our partnerships in cases where technical support is solicited, and where we see the potential for an important contribution to women’s human rights praxis. In recognition of the profound need to squarely center indigenous women’s rights within the framework of the CEDAW Convention, and in line with our mission to amplify women’s movements in the expansion of existing human rights standards, we supported this movement in various capacities as an ally, and continue to prioritize this work in all areas of our programming.
The WHRI is working on documenting the history of this particular movement, to highlight the organic and grassroots nature of the call and movement for the CEDAW General Recommendation on Indigenous Women and so that the indigenous women’s organizations who raised this issue and lobbied for the CEDAW Committee to take it on will be remembered, consulted, and honoured for their efforts. It is also an important case study from which other advocates and movements can learn, and is shared through our ongoing training and mentoring to build support and to inspire other women’s human rights defenders.
A short summary follows, but to read the more detailed history-in-progress of this movement, please see the link below. We also recognize that many other organizations have played active roles in lobbying for the full recognition of indigenous women’s rights within the UN system, and look to expand this history document further beyond our particular efforts to that end.