Beijing+25 & Generation Equality Forum
2020 will be an important year for the international women’s rights movement. It marks the 25th Anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action, but also the 10th Anniversary of UN Women and the 20th Anniversary of Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women Peace and Security. For this occasion, a series of global processes and gatherings are planned over the course of 2020, known as Beijing+25. Besides the annual Commission on the Status of Women (CSW64), there will be two extraordinary global gatherings – the Generation Equality Forum (GEF).
The goal of the GEF is not to produce more policy and reinvent the wheel, but to accelerate implementation, strengthen accountability mechanisms and create concrete plans and commitments for action and to make the process inclusive and participatory. By taking existing gender equality mechanisms and harnessing the Social Development Goals (SDGs), multi-stakeholder action coalitions consisting of civil society, the private sector and member states, will come together to create 5-year action plans to commit governments to implement radical systemic change towards equality.
What is the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action?
The Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action (BPfA) is one of the milestones in international women’s rights. In 1995, 30,000 activists from around the globe streamed into Beijing for the 4th World Conference on Women. The outcome of the conference was the BPfA, the most progressive blueprint ever for advancing women’s rights.
Every 5 years a review process takes place, and for the 25th anniversary, activists are pushing for more concrete action and commitments by governments for an acceleration of implementation and more inclusive processes for systemic change. You can find the 1995 legal text of BPfA here.
What is the Generation Equality Forum & How does it Relate to Beijing+25?
The GEF is a multi-stakeholder gathering with two major meetings in Mexico (May 2020) and Paris (July 2020). The Forum is convened by UN Women, co-chaired by France and Mexico, and in partnership with global civil society. Discussions in these two major meetings will focus on action and accountability for the full implementation of the Beijing Declaration and intersecting, emerging issues for gender equality.
Check out the presentations below for an overview of of the process and related questions:
What are the Action Coalitions?
The Action Coalitions will be innovative partnerships between civil society, Member States and private sector, who share common goals to accelerate action on critical thematic areas of concern. These Action Coalitions will develop a set of concrete, ambitious, and transformative actions that coalition members will take between 2020-2025 to achieve immediate and irreversible progress towards gender equality.
After a series of civil society consultations at regional Beijing+25 review meetings, the themes of the Action Coalitions have been announced:
- Gender-Based Violence
- Economic Justice and Rights
- Bodily Autonomy and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights
- Feminist Action for Climate Justice
- Technology and Innovation for Gender Equality
- Feminist Movements and Leadership
Keep up to date on future events and consultation meetings for GEF here.
What is the Feminist and Women’s Rights Action Plan?
The Feminist and Women’s Action Plan (FWMAP) is the roadmap to Beijing+25, developed and led by civil society activists and experts. It is organised in six cross-cutting thematic clusters:
- Inclusive development, share prosperity, and decent work
- Poverty eradication, social protection and social services
- Freedom from violence, stigma and stereotypes
- Participation, accountability and gender-responsive institutions
- Peaceful and inclusive societies
- Environmental conservation, protection and rehabilitation
You can find more information on the themes here.
How can I Engage & Contribute to Beijing+25?
The best way to contribute is by joining one or more of the FWMAP thematic cluster working groups. The process is facilitated online and is participatory. Sign-up to join a working group here – there is no deadline, so you can register at any time!
Check out the links below for more information on the working groups and FWMAP:
- Advisory Working Group
- Feminist & Women’s Action Plan
- Feminist & Women’s Movment Action Plan for Beijing+25
What is Young Feminist Europe’s Role in the Beijing+25 Process?
Young Feminist Europe has been selected to be a member of the Civil Society Global Advisory Group, representing those Europe. As part of this role, we will help shape the process of the Generation Equality Forum, creating accessible, participatory and inclusive spaces. We will focus on mobilising local, grassroots and especially young diverse feminists. Creating spaces for collaboration and generative dialogue with an intersectional focus, spaces for exchanges and strategic planning, many of which will be facilitated online. We will also be supporting local groups to plan in-person gatherings.
You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on how to engage in Beijing+25 and GEF, to get updates on the current process or if you/your organisation wants to give input. Let us also know if you’re planning activities around Beijing+25 and GEF.
You can find more information about the Global CSO Advisory Group (to the core group) below as well as keep updated about the Beijing+25 and GEF process:
Are you a Young Feminist (under-35)?
Young Feminist Europe co-hosts the Mighty Network – Young Feminist Hub Beijing25/GEF, which is a space for and by young feminists to organise, strategise and mobilise for the Beijing+25 and GEF. There are currently 100+ members working simultaneously in the co-creational space and working groups. You can join the Hub by registering here.
Mobilise for the Generation Equality Forum
We need all eyes on Beijing+25 and GEF to put pressure on governments. Check out the official social media toolkit and use #GenerationEquality online, and be sure to follow the Beijing+25 Global Youth Taskforce on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
Activists and civil society organisations play a vital role in accelerating policy implementation, and that is why we are advocating for international governmental policy processes to be less abstract and to involve local grassroots directly in these spaces. This way, regional and community needs are accounted for in the planning of the GEF Action Coalitions.
Workshops, local gatherings and info-sessions can help center how Beijing+25 and GEF impacts you as well as raise awareness of their importance. They can also help you formulate ideas to input into the official working group processes. Key questions that we would encourage all activists and civil society to think about: who can you bring into the discussion and what do you envision for our feminist future?
For more information about the Generation Equality Forum and how it impacts Beijing+25, visit the new dedicated website here.