Our Impact in 2018
A note from our Global Executive Director, Yasmeen Hassan:
The movement for gender equality is at another pivotal moment in its history. A rise in xenophobia, nationalism and fundamentalism is seeing women forced back into traditional roles and attacks on reproductive rights are gathering pace. Sex trafficking remains a $99 billion industry. At the same time, globalization is changing the dynamics and discourse around female genital mutilation and child “marriage” with there being consensus that these practices need to end.
As we seek to protect the rights of women, we must work increasingly closer with our colleagues in the wider human rights sector as we see the continued abuse of human rights (and human rights defenders) across numerous communities. All of this must be done in the context of huge global challenges such as the migration crisis and climate change.
On the positive side, there has been surge in activism by people from all walks of life, spurred on by disillusionment with governments and alarm at the erosion of human rights and basic decency. In particular, women are raising their voices through the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements, which have become global. We need to take advantage of this activism and direct it to lasting legal and policy change if we are to end the discrimination and violence women and girls face everyday. Cultural change and legal change must go hand in hand.
The long campaign for global gender equality requires strong foundations and support of women’s rights activists around the world. Our strategic plan requires investment in growth of the organization so that we are: present in all regions; have increased effective collaboration with partners and between our offices; focusing on learning and adapting to more effectively deliver on each of our four program areas -- Legal Equality and Access to Justice, End Sexual Violence, End Sex Trafficking and End Harmful Practices.
I hope in reading this report you will get a sense of the long-term impact Equality Now is making and a sense of the passion, energy and expertise that we bring to our work every day.