Women, Children, Population – UN News Centre

A world of news from the world organization

Make 2021 ‘safer, healthier world for children’, UNICEF chief urges

The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said on Thursday that more than 371,500 children would be born on the first day of 2021. 

FROM THE FIELD: India’s pandemic of violence against women

An increase in violence against women in India during the global COVID-19 outbreak has been described by the United Nations as a "shadow pandemic".

Avert ‘dire consequences’ for women's health, UNFPA urges in appeal to prevent maternal deaths

The UN agency dedicated to improving reproductive and maternal health worldwide (UNFPA) appealed on Monday for $2.5 billion by 2030 to help avert potential “dire consequences” surrounding pregnancies and maternal deaths.

ILO study finds migrants earn much less than locals, and the gap is widening

The gap between wages paid to migrant and national workers is big and growing, and may widen further because of the pandemic, the International Labour Organization (ILO) said in a report published on Monday.

Improved Afghan law still fails victims of sex crimes and violence against women, UN report finds

Afghanistan’s justice system is continuing to fail female victims of violence and sex crimes, despite a 2009 law that was hailed as a significant step forward in legal efforts to protect them, according to a UN report published jointly on Monday by the UN human rights office (OHCHR) and the UN Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA).

COVID-19 worsening gender-based violence, trafficking risk, for women and girls

With the COVID-19 pandemic heightening the dangers of gender-based violence and human trafficking, action on these two fronts is needed now more than ever, the head of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) said on Monday. 

FROM THE FIELD: Answering the call for help in Thailand

Violence against women and girls at home affects millions globally. The problem is particularly pervasive as it occurs in a space women and girls should feel most secure. 

FROM THE FIELD: Girl child soldier shunned at home in Uganda

A young mother has been talking about how she was shunned by her community in Uganda when she returned home after being abducted and forced to fight for rebels as a child soldier.

Build on momentum to end violence against women and girls: Secretary-General

Although much progress has been made in highlighting the pressing issue of violence against women and girls, UN Secretary-General António Guterres is pushing the world to go further towards ending what he has characterized as a blight on all societies. 

End gender-based violence, ‘once and for all’, UN urges on International Day

Commemorating the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on Wednesday, the United Nations has called on governments worldwide to redouble efforts and eradicate gender-based violence forever. 

UN expert calls for urgent action to end ‘pandemic of femicide and violence against women’ 

COVID-19 is overshadowing what has become a “pandemic of femicide” and related gender-based violence against women and girls, said independent UN human rights expert Dubravka Šimonović on Monday, calling for the universal establishment of national initiatives to monitor and prevent such killings.  

WHO rolls out plan to rid world of cervical cancer, saving millions of lives

The World Health Organization (WHO) set out a strategy on Tuesday for eliminating cervical cancer, which would avoid the death of an estimated five million women and girls from the disease, by 2050.

UN rights experts call for release of Saudi activist championing women’s right to drive

The deteriorating health of Saudi women’s rights activist Loujain Al-Hathloul is “deeply alarming”, UN-appointed rights experts said on Wednesday, calling for her release along with “all other women human rights defenders in detention”. 

First Person: supporting migrants on the COVID-19 frontline in Myanmar

One of the far-reaching effects of the global lockdown brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic has been the return of migrant workers to their home countries.  The UN is assisting the authorities in Myanmar in facilitating this homeward migration, with a focus on providing for the needs of women. 

Standing up for vulnerable South Sudanese: UN woman police officer of the year

Chief Inspector Doreen Malambo, Gender Adviser at the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), has won 2020 UN Woman Police Officer of the Year Award, in honour of her work supporting vulnerable groups, such as women, girls, children, and people with disabilities.

Guterres to Security Council: Women leaders ‘essential to peace and progress for all’

Women continue to be under-represented in key decision-making over the battle against COVID-19, the chief of the UN gender empowerment agency said on Thursday, addressing the Security Council, adding that the situation is even “worse for women in conflict areas”.

New UN gender study: Women ‘far from having an equal voice to men’

The COVID-19 pandemic is “interrupting efforts” to achieve gender equality and threatening to “reverse hard-won gains” over the past decades, a senior UN official said on Tuesday.

Invest in rural women, help them build resilience to future crises, urges UN chief

Rural women play a critical role in agriculture, food security and managing land and natural resources - yet many suffer from "discrimination, systemic racism, and structural poverty", the UN chief said on Thursday. 

International Day of the Girl: ‘Be bold in your demands’, urges UN deputy chief 

As the COVID-19 pandemic increases gender, economic and racial inequalities, the UN on Friday marked the upcoming International Day of the Girl, with a youth-driven virtual townhall to demand a more just and equitable world for girls.

Guterres: UN working ‘relentlessly’ to advance women, peace and security agenda

Armed conflict has a disproportionate impact on women and girls – a key reason why women’s “full, equal and meaningful participation” in UN peacekeeping is such a priority, the Secretary-General said on Thursday. 

Report reveals linkages between human trafficking and forced marriage

Across the world, girls as young as 12 are being forced or tricked into marrying men who exploit them for sex and domestic work, in what the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has called an “under-reported, global form of human trafficking”. 

Iraq urged to investigate attacks on women human rights defenders

UN-appointed independent rights experts have urged the Iraqi authorities to investigate the murder of a female human rights defender, and the attempted killing of another, targeted “simply because they are women”.

COVID-19 underscores need to deliver on promise of landmark women’s rights conference

Unless countries act now, the COVID-19 pandemic could erase recent “fragile progress” towards gender equality, the UN Secretary-General warned on Thursday, urging governments to put women at the centre of recovery and response. 

Thailand: More than 100 companies pledge to strengthen women’s economic empowerment

Chief executives of 110 companies in Thailand on Wednesday, have signed up to a new set of UN principles on women’s economic empowerment, pledging to improve gender equality in the boardroom, equal pay for equal work, and safer and more inclusive workplaces.

Redouble efforts against ‘global scourge’ of gender-based violence, intensified by pandemic: Guterres 

From domestic violence to sexual abuse, online harassment and increased child marriage, gender-based violence (GBV) is “a global scourge” that is being exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, the UN chief said on Tuesday. 

Nobel laureate Nadia Murad denounces lack of will to end sexual violence as a war tactic

With one in three women around the world affected by gender-based violence – a crime that skyrockets more than 200 per cent in conflict settings – Nobel laureate Nadia Murad brought governments and UN leaders to task on Monday, for failing to provide the resources needed to create meaningful change for traumatized communities.

Most countries failing to protect women from COVID-19 economic and social fallout

The COVID-19 pandemic is “hitting women hard”, but most nations are failing to provide sufficient social and economic protection for them, the head of the UN gender empowerment agency said on Monday.

Conflict, climate crisis, threaten fragile gains to advance women and children’s health

Fragile gains made over the past decade to advance women and children’s health are threatened by conflict, the climate crisis and COVID-19, according to a new report from Every Woman Every Child, released on Friday.

Sustainable Development goals are ‘the future’ Malala tells major UN event, urging countries to get on track

The Global Goals represent the future for millions of girls who want education, women who fight for equality, and youth fighting for clean air, UN Messenger of Peace Malala Yousafzai said on Friday, at a side event of the General Assembly, challenging Member States, “when are you planning to do the work”? 

Equal pay essential to build a world of dignity and justice for all, UN says, commemorating first International Equal Pay Day

The United Nations is marking the first ever International Equal Pay Day, on Friday, drawing attention to the gender pay gap – the difference between what a woman earns compared to a man, for work of equal value – and the systemic inequalities it is rooted in.