Reaction to the G7 gender ministerial – 130 million girls out of school, nearly 1000 women infected with HIV every day

PARIS – Today, the Gender Equality Advisory Council (GEAC), a consultative G7 body, presented its declaration on gender equality to key gender ministers in the run-up to the G7 in Biarritz. Members of the Gender Equality Advisory Council include Emma Watson, Alice Albright (Global Partnership for Education), Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka (UN Women), Denis Mukwege (Nobel Prize) among eminent global champions of gender equality.

This follows a two-day meeting of gender Ministers of G7 countries, the EU, Argentina, Burkina Faso, New Zealand, Norway, Rwanda, and Tunisia – who met in Paris in the lead up to the G7 in Biarritz.

Friederike Röder, ONE’s EU and France director, welcomed the progress made this week:

“With 130 million girls out of school, nearly 1000 women infected with HIV every day, and women across the world held back by outdated and sexist laws, the need for action could not be greater.

“The discussions at this week’s ministerial meeting in Paris were an important step on the way to Biarritz where G7 leaders have to take the right decisions to make real progress. Gender ministers and the advisory council members have called for increased support for women and girls worldwide – especially for activists in Africa, for a greater role for civil society and for better accountability of promises made on gender equality.

“Leaders should hear this call and act on it. They have the power to change the situation of millions of women: we need them to commit to legislative change that will level the playing field between men and women. But we also need additional funding so that no girl and no woman is left behind, especially in the poorest countries. Last but not least, change won’t happen without an independent mechanism tracking progress and ensuring implementation happens.”

ONE Campaign activists gathered in Paris, showing ministers that citizens support bold action on gender equality – and want leaders to seize the moment for a historic commitment on Gender Equality at the G7 summit in Biarritz.

Aya Chebbi, Tunisian activist and African Union Youth envoy, said:

“The only way to fight injustice is to act. If we don’t act now more than 50 million girls will be at risk of undergoing female genital mutilation and 150 million will be married in childhood by 2030 in Africa. If we don’t act now, we will not be alive to see gender equality in the world in 108 years”

“There is an urgency for actions and not for words. What I wish to see now from the G7 in Biarritz are concrete actions that will affect women all over the world. G7 leaders are still on time to do the right thing for millions of women around the world”