Using the Law to Change the World for Women and Girls
Yasmeen Hassan, Global Executive Director, Equality Now
Equality Now is delighted to be part of the International Women’s Day alliance.
We know that legal equality is an essential step to achieving gender equality. When properly implemented, laws have the power to protect women and girls from violence, challenge social norms, and define a gender-equal future, which will benefit us all.
Yet, legal inequality still exists in some form in every country in the world; centuries of sexism are built into the foundation of nation states: From laws that restrict women’s ability to work, own property, inherit, to countries failures to outlaw practices like female genital mutilation (FGM), child marriage and online sexual exploitation, legal inequality legitimizes the discrimination and violence that is an everyday reality for half the world’s population.
Since 1992, in partnership with activists around the globe, we’ve changed over 55 sex discriminatory laws, such as those prohibiting women from working, owning property or passing their nationality to their spouses of children, those requiring wife obedience and allowing so-called “honor” killings.
To improve justice systems we’ve trained over 1000 members of the judiciary to use the law to promote women’s rights. We’ve spearheaded 18 precedent setting strategic litigation cases on the rights of adolescent girls, including on rape, abduction and forced marriage, and sex trafficking.
We are honored to be part of a community that celebrates advances in gender equality and highlights the work still to be done.
By working together we can #BreakTheBias — and build a world where all women and girls can live safe, fearless, and free.
Learn more about Equality Now and some of their achievements from the previous year.