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The Importance of WILPF


WILPF (the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom) is an international anti-militarist non-governmental organisation (NGO) that works for peace, women's rights and disarmament. Members work through branches, as individuals and in co-operation with other organisations to further WILPF's vision, offering a feminist perspective on discussions and activities. We lobby the government and work to identify the root causes of conflict and to mobilise women to work to prevent war and build peace. 


The British section of WILPF asks all political parties and prospective MPs to commit to integrating women’s full human rights into every aspect of political policy. There should be a particular focus on two areas of change: working towards disarmament and transferring gender relations.

Working towards disarmament is an achievable goal

Reduce government military expenditure and redistribute these funds towards organisations that educate, heal, and care for people: hospitals, surgeries, schools, nurseries, care for old people, and improved services and access for people with disabilities.

Fulfil governmental obligations made at the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference in 2010 to “commit to undertake further efforts to reduce, and ultimately eliminate, all types of nuclear weapons, deployed and non-deployed, including through unilateral, bilateral, regional and multilateral measures.” This would include stopping the on-going replacement of current nuclear weaponry and stopping the purchase of additional nuclear weaponry PRIOR to the 2016 review of the Britain’s Trident Nuclear Weapons programme. Ensure and support women’s full, equal and safe participation in all peace negotiations and processes. If women are not legitimately participating in a peace negotiating process, states should bring pressure to bear and, if necessary, use non-support as a last resort.

WHY? Research1 shows that the best predictor of a state’s peacefulness is the security of its female citizens. Conflict and militarisation disproportionately affect women and girls. More than 80 per cent of people displaced by conflict are women.2 Yet fifteen years after the United Nations’ Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325 on women, peace and security was passed, fewer than three per cent of signatories to peace agreements are women, and less than 10 per cent of negotiators are women.3

How to Transform gender relations

The complete implementation of the recommendations made by the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), the only legal convention to protect and promote women’s human rights, with particular attention paid to the prevalence of violence against women; the gender pay gap; and the dearth of women in Parliament, the legal system, and on the boards of organisations set up by the British government (such as magistrates, police boards and other public bodies).4

Increase of the numbers of women leaders and spokespersons in the public sphere of life, particularly in the science, technology, engineering, mathematics, business, economics, politics, legal and media sectors.

Footnotes:

.1http://belfercenter.ksg.harvard.edu/publication/18797/heart_of_the_matter.html

2http://www.womensrefugeecommission.org/programs/youth/763-girlsstories

http://www.unhcr.org/pages/49c3646c4d6.html

3According to UN Women - http://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2015/jan/22/women-rights-war-peace-un-resolution-1325

http://www.eldis.org/go/home&id=69746&type=Document#.VMV3l8YmXY1

4http://www.equalityhumanrights.com/about-us/our-work/human-rights/international-framework/un-convention-elimination-discrimination-against-women/concluding-observations-committee-elimination-discrimination-against-women

5http://www.wilpfinternational.org/military-expenditures-vs-human-rights-you-get-what-you-pay-for/