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Christian Aid applauds Justine Greening's speech on girls and women

Monday 4 March 2013

Commenting on a speech about female empowerment made today by Secretary of State for International Development, Justine Greening, at an event co-hosted by Christian Aid, Christian Aid's Director Loretta Minghella said:

'Christian Aid warmly welcomes Justine Greening’s focus to help women and girls have greater choice, voice and control in their lives. This Friday the world marks International Women’s Day and today activists, academics, officials and ministers gather in New York for the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).

'We welcome, too, the Secretary of State’s plans to launch an international call for action to address violence against women and girls in humanitarian situations. Her push for a stand-alone goal on gender equality in plans that will follow the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which expire in 2015, is much to be applauded.'

Ms Minghella added: 'Across the world, gender inequality persists despite our progress in human rights and equality, undermining our efforts to eradicate poverty. Indeed, women are more likely to experience poverty than men, and six out of ten women globally will experience physical and/or sexual violence within their lifetime, an injustice which must be addressed.

'The Secretary of State today highlighted the pandemic of violence against women, and DFID's work towards a strong outcome at this year's CSW.

‘The CSW is a key opportunity to establish global standards in tackling violence against women and girls, an area that needs vital support from governments, civil society and faith groups alike, to address damaging social and cultural norms.

'We look forward to the UK delegation pushing for a strong outcome this year.'

Christian Aid's senior adviser on poverty and inequality, Helen Dennis, added: 'We are delighted to hear the Secretary of State pledge her personal commitment to a stand-alone goal on gender equality in the post-MDG discussions.

'We now need to see a similar commitment from other global leaders, and to see a goal on achieving greater equality between women and men.

'As the Secretary of State said, it is both the smart, and right, thing to do. This could lead to action to protect women from violence and see them realise their potential in business, as political leaders and as drivers of social change.'

If you would like further information please contact Melanie Smith on 0207 523 2416. 24 hour press duty phone - 07850 242950.



Notes to editors:

  1. Christian Aid works in some of the world's poorest communities in around some 50 countries at any one time. We act where there is great need, regardless of religion, helping people to live a full life, free from poverty. We provide urgent, practical and effective assistance in tackling the root causes of poverty as well as its effects.

  2. Christian Aid has a vision, an end to global poverty, and we believe that vision can become a reality. We believe that the underlying causes of poverty were made by, and can be ended by, human action. Our strategy for building the power of us all to end poverty is embodied in a new report ‘Partnership for Change’: http://www.christianaid.org.uk/Images/2012_strategy.pdf

  3. Christian Aid is a member of the ACT Alliance, a global coalition of 125 churches and church-related organisations that work together in humanitarian assistance, advocacy and development.  Further details at http://actalliance.org

  4. Follow Christian Aid's newswire on Twitter: http://twitter.com/caid_newswire

  5. For more information about the work of Christian Aid visit http://www.christianaid.org.uk