As a technical partner in the YW4A consortium, Equality Now is building the capacity of young women and women rights organizations to develop national advocacy strategies that will be informed by country-specific legal gaps on discriminatory laws and practices that perpetuate violence against women and girls. Furthermore, their exclusion from decision-making spaces. In addition, we are working with partners to develop and implement a media strategy that seeks to humanize women’s rights violations, win the court of public opinion, and identification of suitable media platforms to amplify these advocacy efforts.
Founded in 1992, Equality Now works to protect and promote the rights of women and girls around the world in the areas of discrimination in law, female genital mutilation (FGM), sexual violence, and trafficking. Equality Now believes that discrimination against women based on sex and gendered roles is inextricably linked to other factors, such as race, ethnicity, religion or belief, disability, status, age, class, caste, sexual orientation, and gender identity. Therefore, they recognize and seek to address intersecting forms of discrimination among women and girls.
In the YW4A Programme, Equality Now provides technical support to national partners in their legal advocacy, through capacity building, coalition building support and engagements with regional and international accountability bodies to amplify young women’s voices.
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The advocacy priorities of the YW4A Programme in Egypt, Kenya, Palestine and South Sudan are:
- To improve the existing draft law on domestic violence and lobby the parliament to pass it.
- To introduce anti-sexual harassment policies in the workplace to be adopted by partner WROs and other WROs and businesses in the community.
- To campaign for mothers to have guardianship in addition to custody rights.
- To encourage young women to run at the level of local councils and increase their participation according to the existing 25% quota
- To influence the repeal of Section 43(5) of the Sexual Offences Act.
- To engage in the review of the Sexual Offences Act to block the lowering of the age of consent and provide for romeo-and-juliet clauses.
- To implement the Meru County Policy on Sexual and Gender Based Violence.
- To implement the Migori County Policy on Sexual and Gender Based Violence.
- To influence the adoption of the Kisii County Policy on Sexual and Gender Based Violence.
- To improve the implementation of the Two-thirds Gender Rule.
- To improve the draft domestic violence law and pressure the government to pass it.
- To influence the government to remove the exception clause, or specify the reasons for exception in the 2019 Child Marriage Law.
- To influence the drafting of a law on sexual harassment in the workplace.
- To improve the Election Law by encouraging women and young women to run at the levels of local councils and university councils.
- To influence the repeal of Section 247(3) of the Penal Code Act on marital rape.
- To influence the enactment of the draft Anti-GBV Bill.
- To influence the enactment of the Family Law Bill.
- To engage the Permanent Constitution Making Process and amendment of the definition of marriageable age as over the age of 18 in line with the Child Act and Penal Code Act.
- To improve the provisions on the place of customary law to be positive norms that do not contradict human rights and the role of customary courts.
- The influence the adoption of Girl Child Education Bill in Central Equatorial State.
- To improve the implementation of the 35% women’s quota.
- To influence the ratification of the Maputo Protocol.
- To influence the ratification of the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child.
Read more about the YW4A Programme and Consortium on the website: www.yw4a.org and LinkedIn page.