The Generation Equality Forum: a historic global feminist event (30 June - 2 July 2021)
The Generation Equality Forum was the most important feminist event ever,coming more than 25 years after the last UN World Conference on Women (Beijing, 1995). The Forum was initiated by UN Women and co-chaired by France and Mexico, in partnership with civil society and young people.
Launched in Mexico in March 2021, the Paris Generation Equality Forum culminated in Paris from 30 June to 2 July 2021. It brought together Heads of State and Government and leaders of international organizations, as well as representatives of civil society, young people and the private sector to make historic commitments and lastingly advance gender equality.
The Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action were adopted at the Fourth UN Conference on Women in 1995. They constituted the most comprehensive framework at the time for achieving women’s empowerment and gender equality.
In 2021, important progress has been made. However, the COVID-19 crisis has disproportionately affected women and girls, who have been on the front line in the pandemic. At the Generation Equality Forum in Paris, France, UN Women and their partners launched the Global Acceleration Plan for Gender Equality. More than 1,000 tangible, ambitious commitments were announced to support it, and the historic sum of $40 billion was raised to advance gender equality over five years.
The Forum was a hybrid event:
An opening ceremony livestreamed via the social media accounts of the UN and the French Presidency and Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, held in person in the afternoon on 30 June, led by French President Emmanuel Macron and involving around 250 high-level figures. It was watched by almost 135,000 people;
Over three days, a digital platform hosted 100 events, allowing almost 650 participants to speak. More than 50,000 people registered.
All stakeholders, including civil society, public authorities, local governments, international organizations, the private sector, philanthropic foundations, the media, academics and young people were invited to take part, because gender equality concerns everyone. The Forum’s programme included events highlighting the commitments of all stakeholders for gender equality. It also offered a platform for other forms of engagement, including those of young feminists, innovative initiatives and global and regional responses to the COVID-19 crisis
TSix action coalitions were launched at the Generation Equality Forum in July 2021. Like during the French G7 Presidency, these multi-stakeholder partnerships will rally governments, civil society and the private sector to achieve tangible and measurable results over the next five years focused on the following themes:
• 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.
The Generation Equality Forum also launched a Compact for Women, Peace and Security and Humanitarian Action, two decades on from the historic adoption of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security.
Almost 100 “champions” joined Action Coalitions to draw up action plans and ensure implementation of commitments through to 2026.
At the Forum in Paris, almost 1,000 commitment makers in the legislative, financial and agenda-setting spheres joined coalitions, as well as gender equality advocates.
France is one of the champions of the “Bodily autonomy and sexual and reproductive health and rights” Action Coalition. It made commitments to foster comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) and access to family planning and legal and safe medical abortion worldwide. Its commitment also extends to girls’ education and protection of female human rights defenders. French initiatives will also be launched in the areas of health, sport and culture.
Watch the highlights of the Opening)]
Watch the highlights of the opening ceremony
Updated: July 2021