The Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), a functional commission of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), is a global policy-making body dedicated exclusively to promoting gender equality and the empowerment of women.
Representatives of UN Member States, civil society organizations and UN entities gather every year at the UN headquarters in New York. The 65th session of CSW took place from 15 to 26 March 2021. In light of the evolving COVID-19 situation, and taking into account the latest guidance from the United Nations Secretary-General and the World Health Organization (WHO), CSW65 took place in a hybrid format with mostly virtual meetings.
About the Event and WIEGO’s Involvement
This year, the Commission addressed as its priority theme "Women's full and effective participation and decision-making in public life and the elimination of violence, for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls".
WIEGO and the Global Networks representing workers in the informal economy raised their voices during the conference parallel events.
Tuesday 16 March: 6:30AM–8:00AM EDT
South Asia's Garment Supply Chains: Good Practices by Women's Collectives
A panel discussion organized by HomeNet South Asia (HNSA) in partnership with IDRC.
Panelists included academics, trade unionists, and founders/CEOs of social enterprises, who shed light on how organizations of South Asian women home-based workers have developed good practices to tackle the precarity of work in global garment supply chains.
During this session, HNSA launched the research report on “Promoting Decent Work for Women Home-Based Workers in Value Chains: Cases from India and Nepal”.
- Marty Chen, International Coordinator Emeritus and Senior Advisor, WIEGO
- Lin Lin, Board Member, WIEGO
- Sanchita Mitra, National Coordinator, SEWA Bharat
- Arjan De Haan, Senior Programme Specialist, IDRC
- Ratna Sudarshan, Lead Researcher, HNSA Study
- Robin Amatya, CEO, SABAH Nepal
- Sumita Ghose, Managing Director, Rangsutra
- Smriti Kedia, CEO, Sadhna
Interpretation will be available in Bangla, Nepali, Hindi and Urdu.
Tuesday 16 March: 8:00AM – 10:00AM EDT
The Missing Rights of Women Workers in the Informal Economy
Organised by the Global 16 Days Campaign [coordinated by the Center of Women Global Leadership (CWGL)], the International Domestic Workers Federation (IDWF), HomeNet International (HNI) and WIEGO.
- Carmen Britez, Vice President, IDWF
- Srishti Joshi Malla, HNSA Advisory Board and Chairperson of SABAH Nepal
- Rosheda Muller, Leader, South African Informal Traders Alliance (SAITA), SNI Affiliate
- Sonia George, General Secretary, SEWA-Kerala and the National Council Member
- Ana Carolina Ogando, Research Associate, WIEGO
- Roshana Pradhan, Program Coordinator, FWLD, Nepal
Interpretation will be available in Spanish.
Wednesday, 17 March: 8:00 am - 10:00 am EDT
IMF and World Bank Austerity Measures are Impediments to the Realization of BPfA
Organized by Action Aid International, Public Service International (PSI), Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era DAWN, Global Alliance Against Traffic in Women (GAATW), Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD), and WIEGO.
- Rachel Moussié, Deputy Director, Social Protection Programme, WIEGO
- Andi Cipta Asmawaty, Labour Program Officer, APWLD
- Misun Woo, Regional Coordinator, APWLD
- Diane Elson, Emeritus Professor, University of Esysex,
- Rosa Pavenelli, General Secretar, PSI
- Corina Rodriguez Enriquez, Executive Committee Member, DAWN
- Neelanjana Mukhia, ActionAid International
- Fatimah Kelleher, ActionAid International
- Jarujit Prajit, Vice President, Nurses Union of Thailand
- Memory Kachambwa, FEMNET
Friday, 19 March: 9:00 am –10:30 am EDT
Photo Credit: Jonathan Torgovnik/Getty Images Reportage
#InvestInCare: A driver of gender equality
Organized by the Global Union Federations about the Global Day of Action on Care.
- Rachel Moussié, Deputy Director of Social Protection, WIEGO
- Grace Papa, CSC A&S Belgium, Member of the Executive Committee, IDWF
- Adriana Paz, Regional Coordinator for Latin America, IDWF
- Marieke Koning, International Trade Union Organization (ITUC)
- Chidi King, Director, Equality Department, ITUC
- Maria Tsirantonaki, Project Cooordinator, ITUC
- Carmen Smenjaud, ITUC Assistant
- Michel Core, Public Services International
- Hazel Ripoll, Public Services International
- Kate Lappin, Public Services International
- Veronica Montufar, Public Services International
- Rebeca Sevilla, Coordinator, Education International
- Yamile Socolovsky, Secretary for Training Research, Projects and StatisticsCTA-T Argentina,
- Bilan Arte, National Representative for Women and Human Rights, Canadian Labour Congress
- Diane Elson, Chair, Women’s Budget Group
Friday, 19 March: 9:00AM–11:00AM EDT
10 Years since C189: Domestic Workers' Need for Social Protection
Organized by the International Domestic Workers Federation (IDWF).
- Elizabeth Tang, General Secretary, IDWF
- Claire Hobden, International Labour Organization
- Ida Le Blanc, National Union of Domestic Employees (NUDE), Trinidad and Tobago
- Lita Anggrini, Jaringan Nasional Advokasi Pekerja Rumah Tangga (JALAPRT), Indonesia
- Maria del Mar Ortolano
- Mary Anne Abunda
- Carmen Almeida
- Nellie Dina Kahua
Tuesday, 23 March: 8:00AM - 9:30AM EDT
Tackling gender inequality through a care economy
CSW65 informal side event
The Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies, in partnership with the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing (WIEGO) hosted a discussion on the role of the care economy in future of work policy discussions, and opportunities within COVID-19 recovery efforts to better recognize and compensate the labor performed by care workers.
- Faiza Shaheen, Inequality and Exclusion Program Lead, Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies
- Chidi King, Director, Equality Department, ITUC
- María Lucía Scuro, Social Affairs Officer, Division for Gender Affairs, Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC)
- Rachel Moussié, Deputy Director, WIEGO Social Protection Programme
- Ian Goldin, Oxford University
- TBD, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Sweden
Wednesday, 24 March: 9:00AM - 11:00AM EDT
Coming Together, Forming Enterprises, Entering the Economy.
Organized by SEWA Bharat.
The session sought to highlight women’s CSEs as a model for women’s economic empowerment, discuss collective strength, representation and bargaining and allied benefits, and share stories of leadership from the ground. It looked to identify ways to support women’s enterprises culminating in a set of recommendations and action points for relevant stakeholders.
Renana Jhabvala, President, SEWA Bharat
Tsigie Haile, Director WISE
Mirai Chatterjee, Chairperson SEWA Cooperative Federation
Elizabeth Vazquez, Co-founder & CEO WEConnect International
Anita Bhatia, Deputy Executive Director, UN Women
Alka Upadhyay, Additional Secretary MoRD, Govt. of India
Madhu Krishna, Deputy Director Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Tsigie Tadale, Advisor, State Minister, Ministry of Women, Children and Youth, Govt. Of Ethiopia
If you have a problem registering on the NGO CSW virtual platform, the event also streamed live on SEWA Bharat's Facebook and YouTube channels.
See the full schedule of events.
- Learn more about WIEGO’s Social Protection Programme
- HomeNet South Asia
- HomeNet South-East Asia
- HomeNet International
- International Domestic Workers Federation
- SEWA Federation
- StreetNet International
- Center of Women Global Leadership
- Read The Triple Crisis: Impact of COVID-19 on Informal Workers’ Care Responsibilities, Paid Work and Earnings
- Learn more about UN Women and the 65th Commission on the Status of Women
- Read the CSW65 Brochure