The 47th session of the Commission on Population and Development was held from April 7 th to 11th at the U.N. headquarters in New York. The session represented an important opportunity for the Member States to review progress towards the implementation of the population agenda that was approved 20 years ago in Cairo, Egypt in which they committed to measures and actions to make human rights a reality for the world population.
The Program of Action for the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD), covers environmental, demographic and social issues in order to identify possible public policy aimed at making people’s rights a reality, with an emphasis on women’s and young people’s rights, including their reproductive rights.
One would think that 20 years later, the States, besides ratifying the commitments that were made, would take advantage of the opportunity to review both what they have achieved as well as what is still pending, and at the same time advance with new commitments in order to recognize and guarantee rights that weren’t identified 20 years ago. However, the 47th session of the CPD wasted this opportunity.
The resolution that emerged from the session in April reaffirms the Cairo commitments and mentions issues and actions agreed upon in previous annual meetings, but it does not recognize sexual rights, the rights of people to freely choose and exercise their sexual orientation and gender identity, nor does it represent any advance in regards to abortion in order to recognize that women can freely decide to continue or not with an unwanted pregnancy without risking their health and freedom.
Even with these pending items, this year’s session maintained previous successes and did not represent a setback, in spite of the efforts by the Vatican and diverse allies to minimize the recognition of reproductive rights and hard fought liberties for women and young people. Countries from the Arab and African block demonstrated conservative and limited discourse and positions despite South Africa’s unsuccessful attempts to move the region towards a more progressive position.
It is important to highlight that the 47th session represented the occasion for the United Nations Secretary General to present the results of the implementation of the operational review by means of a report that identifies the primary challenges and presents compelling arguments for the need to continue advancing towards guaranteeing rights. This document was recognized by the Member States in the resolution, as were the results of the regional meetings that were held at the end of 2013 and in which there were more important advances than in the global session.
For Latin America, it is precisely the results of the regional session, contained in the document knows as the “Montevideo Consensus,” that set forth substantial advances in rights and commitments and that represent an important challenge for all countries in Latin America and the Caribbean in implementing policies and programs to make them a reality.
We celebrate the protagonist role of our region in the discussions. We recognize that between 1994 and 2014 most governments have transformed their vision and strengthened their commitment. We have gone from being a region with various reservations to the ICPD agenda to moving towards the promotion and recognition of rights, with the regional consensus as the central agenda, which is without a doubt the most advanced in the world.
For the Cairo+20 Regional Alliance, the ICPD review process has represented an important opportunity to work in a coordinated fashion to promote a progressive rights-based agenda. The Alliance’s actions began in 2012 and will end this September with the United Nations’ special session which will look at each one of the results of the evaluation process. However, the over 50 networks, collectives and regional organizations that are part of the Alliance have worked for many years in communities, in the follow-up and monitoring of national governments and with regional and global bodies in the construction of agreements and the evaluation of achievements. We will continue to carry out this work without cessation.
Our slogan has been, “My body, my territory” and with this conviction, both the challenges as well as the pending agenda will continue to be our constant work.
Regional Alliance Cairo+20
1. Alianza LAC Juventudes rumbo a Cairo+20
2. Amnistía Internacional
3. Articulación Feminista Marcosur
4. Asociación Latinoamericana de Población-ALAP
5. Campaña 28 de Septiembre por la Despenalización del Aborto de América Latina y el Caribe
6. Campaña por una Convención Interamericana de los Derechos Sexuales y Reproductivos
7. Caribbean DAWN
8. Centro Feminista de Estudos e Assessoria: CFEMEA
9. Círculo de Juventud Afrodescendiente de las Américas-CJAA
10. Coalición Caribeña de Población y Desarrollo
11. Coalición Contra el Tráfico de Mujeres y Niñas en América Latina y El Caribe
12. Coalición Salvadoreña de Mujeres rumbo a Cairo + 20
13. Coalición Nacional de SC hacia Cairo más 20
14. Coalición por la Salud de las Mujeres en México
15. Comisión Nacional de Seguimiento Mujeres por Democracia, equidad y ciudadanía-CNS mujeres
16. Comité de América Latina y El Caribe para la Defensa de los Derechos de la Mujer-CLADEM
17. Consejo Latinoamericano y del Caribe de organizaciones no gubernamentales con servicio en VIH/SIDA- LACASSO
18. Consorcio Latinoamericano contra el aborto inseguro-CLACAI
19. Consorcio Latinoamericano de Anticoncepción de Emergencia – CLAE
20. Consejo Latinoamericano de Iglesias-CLAI
21. Coordinación de Mujeres del Paraguay
22. Coordinación Red Feminista Centroamericana contra la Violencia hacia las Mujeres-CEMUJER
23. Coordinadora de la Mujer de Bolivia
24. Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era – DAWN
25. El Closet de Sor Juana
26. Enlace Continental de Mujeres Indígenas de las Américas – ECMIA
27. Espacio Iberoamericano de Juventud
28. Fundación para Estudio e Investigación de la Mujer-FEIM
29. Grupo de Seguimiento a Cairo- Bolivia
30. Grupo de Trabajo en Sexualidades y Géneros. Argentina
31. Grupo Internacional de Mujeres y SIDA
32. International Community of Women living with HIV-AISD- ICW Latina
33. International Planned Parenthood Federation, -IPPF
35. Lesbianas, Gays. Bisexuales, Trans e intersexuales de América Latina y El Carible-ILGA LAC
36. Mesa de Vigilancia por la Defensa de los Derechos Sexuales y Reproductivos –Perú
37. Movimiento Latinoamericano de Mujeres y VIH
38. Plataforma de Seguimiento a Cairo en México – CAIRO+20MX
39. Plataforma Juvenil Salvadoreña por los derechossexuales y derechosreproductivos.
40. Realizing Sexual and ReproductiveJustices-RESURJ
41. Red de EducaciónPopularentreMujeres, REPEM
42. Red de masculinidad por la igualdad de género
43. Red de mujeres Afrolatinoamericanas, Afrocaribeñas y de la Diáspora
44. Red de Salud de las Mujeres Latinoamericanas y El Caribe, RSMLAC
45. Red Latinoamericana y Caribeña de Juventudes por los derechos sexuales y reproductivos, REDLAC
46. Red Latinoamericanas de Católicas por el Derecho a Decidir, CDD
47. Red Mundial de Mujeres por los Derechos Reproductivos, RMMDR
48. Red Nacional de Jóvenes y Adolescentes por la Salud Sexual y Reproductiva-Argentina
49. Red de Mujeres Trabajadoras Sexuales de Lationamerica y el Caribe,REDTRASEX
50. Youth Coalition
52. Sí Mujer – Nicaragua
53. Taller Salud – Puerto Rico