Ambassador Richard Mills
Deputy U.S. Representative to the United Nations
New York, New York
February 14, 2022
And let me begin by joining others in congratulating Dr. Sima Bahous on her appointment as UN Women Executive Director. The United States thanks UN Women for its ongoing leadership to fight for women and girls across the globe.
The United States is proud that the Third Committee biennial resolution on elections contains new language on gender and political participation and calls on countries to eliminate discriminatory laws, policies, and programs against all persons on the basis of their identity, including on sexual orientation and gender identity.
COVID-19 as we have heard, has disproportionately impacted the human rights, health, education, employment, and economic status of women and girls in all their diversity. We are seeing decades of progress on rights for women and girls dismantled in record time and we’re also seeing extraordinary spikes in gender-based violence. For these tragic reasons and given UN Women’s leadership on these issues, the United States has increased its core funding contribution to UN Women by nearly $5 million U.S. dollars.
We strongly support the Generation Equality Forum (GEF) and we welcome UN Women’s incorporation of the GEF into its Strategic Plan. Last June, Vice President Harris announced U.S. commitments for the Action Coalitions on gender-based violence, economic justice and rights, and sexual and reproductive health and rights. The United States also signed the Women, Peace and Security and Humanitarian Compact. We appreciate recent plans to unveil a public commitment dashboard and a preview of a GEF accountability framework at the upcoming Commission on the Status of Women. We strongly encourage UN Women to outline specifically how commitment-makers beyond Action Coalition leadership will be engaged in the Forum’s governance structure, to more consistently keep commitment-makers informed and to keep to the timeline recently shared with Member States. This is critical so that the GEF goals are not put at further risk and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.
In closing, our commitment to gender equity and equality is steadfast, as demonstrated by our release last year of the United States’ first National Strategy on Gender Equity and Equality. We look forward to working with UN Women and Member States to ensure timely implementation of Generation Equality Forum commitments and the ambitious UN Women Strategic Plan and to crafting robust, action oriented CSW Agreed Conclusions in March.
Thank you, Madam President.