WPS Consultation: Key CSO Recommendations in Review

by Prachi Rao

A key event at the WILPF 100 conference was the April 28th interactive consultation on the October 2015 Women Peace and Security High Level review co-hosted by WILPF PeaceWomen and UN Women. As part of consultations around the UNSCR 1325 global study, lead author Radhika Coomaraswamy, along with PeaceWomen Director Maria Butler and UN Women Peace and Security Policy Adviser and Officer in Charge Nahla Valji met with over 80 members of civil society from around the world to hear input, recommendations, and voices for action.

Civil society provided recommendations and pledges on nine key gap areas: Human Rights & Humanitarian Relief; Prevention and Early Warning Systems; Political Economy and Economic Rights; Environmental Degradation and Climate Justice; Human Rights Defenders and Journalists; The Continuum of Violence: Gangs, Small Arms and Light Weapons; Leadership and Accountability; National Action Plans: Minimum Standards and Maximising Revisions; and Masculinity and Violence.

The Global Study and October Review should:

1. Prevention and Early Warning Systems - call for gender budgeting, in consultation with women, to be used as a tool to address, highlight and mitigate militarised state budgets and its effect on international peace and security and women’s rights.

2. The Continuum of Violence: Gangs, Small Arms and Light Weapons - call for a prioritisation of violence prevention as a key gap area including by reducing military spending, regulating arms consistent with the Arms Trade Treaty, and substantially increasing financing for women's human rights and gender equitable social development

3. Leadership and Accountability - call for increased women, who are tied to the movement, to be involved in peace processes as they can mobilise action and remain accountable to their constituency.

4. National Action Plans: Minimum Standards and Maximising Revisions -  require that the drafting of NAPS be inclusive, bottom-up and bring a feminist perspective.

5. Masculinity and Violence - call for a two-track approach, which avoids seeing men as solely the problem and women the victim, and works with both men and women to build women’s capacity for leadership and alter attitudes toward masculinities and femininities.