• The Covid-19 pandemic has increased GBV, exacerbated existing gender inequalities
• The Generation Equality Forum held in Paris committed to changing the narrative
The World Health Organization has announced multiple commitments to drive change for gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls in all their diversity.
The WHO commitments focused on ending gender-based violence; advancing sexual and reproductive health and rights; and supporting health workers as well as feminist movements and leadership.
These commitments shape a progressive and transformative blueprint for advancing gender equality, health equity, human rights and the empowerment of women and girls globally, WHO said.
The announcements were made at the Generation Equality Forum, held last week in Paris. The Forum, marking the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action on Women, came at a critical moment, with Covid-19 having exacerbated existing gender inequalities.
WHO committed to increasing the number of countries with clinical protocols focusing on a comprehensive, survivor-centred, empathetic health response for women and girls subjected to violence.
It will also work with partners to scale up evidence-based prevention of violence against women and girls in 25 countries with high prevalence. It will further develop and support the uptake by health providers, policy makers and managers of a training course on health responses to violence against women and girls through the WHO Academy.
WHO also committed to investing in the evidence base for sexual and reproductive health and rights, including delivering comprehensive sexuality education outside school settings; improving access to quality and rights-based family planning in 14 middle-income countries, including Kenya.
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