The Women, Peace and Security Agenda: Where are we now?

Jun 21, 2016Policy and Advocacy articles

It has been 15 years since the United Nations adopted Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000), which recognised the importance of women’s equal and substantive participation as actors for peace and security. Since that time, there have been seven subsequent resolutions, operationalised through the development of National Action Plans at the country-level. As of December 2015, fifty-five countries have created National Action Plans for the implementation of UNSCR 1325 and associated resolutions.

Despite the international recognition of the Women, Peace and Security agenda, more action is needed. We know women’s leadership and substantive participation is essential for sustainable peace, yet, women are still being excluded from peace talks.

The Coalition welcomes the commitment to promoting peace, justice and strong institutions as one of the 17 Global Goals that make up the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. However, reference to women, peace and security is conspicuously absent. Goal 16 contains twelve targets; none of these explicitly consider gender.

It is proposed that some indicators currently being developed under Goal 16 be disaggregated by age and sex. However, worryingly, there are no proposed indicators which directly focus on women’s experiences of, and needs in relation to, peace and security or measures for women’s participation in peace talks and post-conflict reconstruction.

The Coalition calls on the Australian Government to adopt, and to advocate for other governments to adopt, an approach to Goal 16 which recognises existing commitments and places women, peace and security at the centre of its efforts.

The Coalition urges the Australian Government to lead by example, by adopting four key approaches to inform action under Goal 16:
(a) Make connections between Goal 5 and Goal 16 in implementation.
(b) Draw on existing frameworks such as UNSCR 1325 and subsequent resolutions, the Beijing Platform for Action, and UNSCR 1325 global indicators to implement and track progress against Goal 16.
(c) Utilise and resource existing commitments and mechanisms such as the Australian National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security in implementing the Global Goals.
(d) Recognise the instrumental role of civil society to the women, peace and security agenda.

Further information can be found in the Coalition’s full briefing: The Women, Peace and Security Agenda: Where are we now?