Annual full-day discussion on the human rights of women
Panel 2: Advancing women’s rights in the economic sphere through access and participation in information and communication technologies (ICTs)
22 June 2018
Joint statement by: International Organization for the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (EAFORD) and Geneva International Centre for Justice (GICJ)
Delivered by: Ms. Sheefa Afath Shaik
Thank you Mr. President,
We thank the council for holding an annual panel discussion on women’s rights and we thank the panelists for their insightful discussions.
While women still struggle to fight against discrimination from domestic places to working places even after a long struggle for gender equality, we are in an era where women and girls must fight for equality, non-violence, and against discrimination in digital spaces. With the increasing role of ICTs, there is a need to increase the role of women in this field and women should be able to equally enjoy the advantages of the ICTs as men without any digital gender divide.
EAFORD and Geneva International Centre for Justice, acknowledge the lack of access of ICTs for women but we are equally concerned about women and girls who do not even have access to basic education, let alone the access to ICTs.
We also raise the concern about those women and girls who are the victims of armed conflicts such as in Iraq, Syria, Yemen, and occupied Palestine and who suffer from extreme poverty. Today, having access to education is far from reality for these women and girls, how would they enjoy the right to access to ICTs ?
In many developing and least-developed countries, majority of people do not enjoy access to internet, how would this become a reality to those millions who do not have a clue about the role of internet and the knowledge about ICTs
While access to ICTs has its advantages from economic to social perspective, we strongly agree that it should be provided and accessible to everyone, without being biased on their gender, and we draw the council’s attention toward those women and girls who need to have basic education to access to the ICTs.