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Women's Passport to Dignity
A Call to Participate

Dear Friends:

PDHRE is hoping for your participation as we embark on a new project, the preparation of a human rights resource book for women, "Women's Passport to Dignity." Based on the Beijing Platform for Action, the book is designed to be a hands-on manual for women and men around the world who are engaged in the struggle for women's human rights.

Included as a crucial part of this book will be examples and case studies from around the world detailing efforts to secure the fundamental human rights of women, especially those efforts which have relied on human rights norms, mechanisms or advocacy. At this early point in our work we are engaged in a broad search for information for this section -- examples of ways in which women have confronted injustices and human rights violations against them, politically, socially and/or legally. We are turning to you for any such information you may have regarding efforts to address the following issues contained in the Beijing Platform:

  • Poverty
  • Education and Training
  • Health
  • Violence
  • Armed Conflict
  • Economy
  • Power and Decision-Making
  • Institutional Mechanisms for the Advancement of Women
  • Media
  • Environment
  • Girl-Child

We are hoping to include examples from every region, experience and walk of life so as to capture the richness of the women's human rights movement. Examples could describe people's attempts to mobilize around a human rights issue, treaty or conference, or to hold their government accountable to treaty obligations, for instance. They could demonstrate how people have attempted to bring national laws into conformity with human rights standards or show how (successfully or not) people have used international law in national courts, etc. Any example of an attempt to use human rights as a tool for social justice would be helpful to us, as would descriptions of experiences people have had in implementing CEDAW, the Beijing Platform, or other treaties. We are looking for a variety of experiences that might resonate with others -- to encourage other women and men to take similar actions to secure their human rights, particularly economic, social and cultural.

While we are looking for a human rights "link" in the examples, we realize that in most cases such a link will not be explicit. Examples of efforts that were not necessarily viewed in human rights terms but nonetheless succeeded in furthering fundamental human rights of women would be extremely helpful as well.

If you have any information that may seem appropriate we would appreciate very much if you could share it with us. We will clearly indicate where we received the stories that we use.

Thank you for any part you may be able to play in creating an effective tool for the empowerment of women.

For more information, please contact PDHRE:
The People's Movement for Human Rights Education, 526 West 111th Street, New York, NY 10025
tel: 212.749-3156; fax: 212.666-6325; e-mail: pdhre@igc.org