Report of Women, Peace, and Security Consults

 

WILPF-U.S.  Report of the Civil Society Consultations on the Development of the

United States National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security (UN SCR 1325) Released! 

 

Read WILPF’s  final Report of the Civil Society Consultations on the Development of the U.S. National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security (UNSCR1325) here

 

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Between 23 September and 22 October 2011, the U.S. Section of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) held five civil society consultations with the Department of State, Office of Women’s Global Issues, on the formulation of the U.S. National Action Plan (NAP) on UN Security Council Resolution 1325, due to be finalized in December 2011. 

The consultations were held in Detroit, Michigan; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; San Diego, California; Portland, Oregon; and Boston, Massachusetts, and collectively nearly four hundred women (and some men) participated. Attendees represented a broad range of nongovernmental organizations, academia and students, and individuals of diverse ages, races, ethnicities, and economic and social statuses, including the frequently “unheard voices” of women living in homeless shelters, undocumented migrants and women who have been trafficked for sexual slavery. 

The consultations validated the stated goal of the U.S. 1325 NAP to make “women equal partners in peace,” while also stressing the centrality of both external and domestic applications to achieve this aim.   

WILPF’s final report on the consultations includes 64 concrete recommendations relevant to UN SCR 1325 implementation internationally, domestically, or both. In total, the recommendations provoke a rethinking of how, as a country, the U.S. defines peace and security, especially in terms of women’s experience of conflict and violence. 

If entirely adopted and implemented, the recommendations necessitate a doctrinal shift in foreign and military policy that firmly situates women’s equality and protection, at home and abroad, at the center of long-term sustainable peace. As such, the findings call for a whole government approach in the development and implementation of a U.S. SCR 1325 NAP in order to address the complexity of women’s experiences of discrimination and inequality as directly linked to a continuum of physical, structural and armed violence.

Consultation participants stressed the need to incorporate in the U.S. 1325 NAP immigration, refugee and asylum policies, and to address the specific challenges of women serving in the military and the families they leave behind and return to—sometimes debilitated by physical and mental trauma. Protection of women from violence must be at the forefront of the 1325 NAP, both at home and abroad, especially as it is directly linked to the impact of militarization, including environmental degradation, on community and family violence. 

Investments in peace, such as the establishment of the Department of Peace and peace and civic education in schools, are recommended as a means of converting a culture of violence into one that prioritizes human security and development.  These recommendations, it should be noted, are unique for their domestic perspective at the grassroots level on how the U.S. must reorganize its domestic policy as a means of remedying a militarized foreign policy approach.

The 1325 civil society consultations were part of a national WILPF campaign that sought to ensure that the U.S. SCR 1325 NAP did not become merely a tool for making war safe for women, but held to its transformative spirit – women must be included in all matters of peace and security for the purpose of establishing long-term sustainable peace for all. 

 

In addition to the 1325 consultations, WILPF’s campaign also included:

A white paper, stressing the impor

tance of a human rights-based approach to formulating a UN SCR 1325 NAP that links peace with equality and that examines both domestic and international applications.

25+ WILPF Branch actions at showings of the feature film “The Whistleblower,” that made the connection between human trafficking and the role of SCR 1325 to ensure the protection of women in conflict and post conflict regions.

 

A YouTube video campaign, where women from across the U.S. and around the world uploaded video recordings of themselves answering the question “What Does Security means to You?” 

 

An online survey on women, peace and security, where 116 participants (and still counting) completed an online survey to define what true “security” means to women. 

 

A 1325 and Whistleblower Facebook page.

 

 

 

 

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