CEDAW Working Group “Women with Disabilities” Report to NCW Executive


Submitted by BPW NZ Past President Dianne Glenn – Leader of CEDAW Working Group “Women with Disabilities”

Actions completed or underway

  1. Remit submitted under urgency to NCW National Conference October 2012
  2. CEDAW Skype Conference
  3. Letter to organisations drafted, approved by NCWNZ Vice President Rae Duff and BPW NZ President Carolyn Savage who co-signed with me
  4. Comprehensive list complied of organisations/agencies involved with people with disabilities and some individuals and Government Ministries.
  5. Commenced sending letters, dated April 2013, later added the MFAT Report (including sending to those who had previously received my letter)
  6. Attendance at UN CEDAW Training hosted by Pacific Women’s Watch NZ (PWW NZ) – following this as an outcome I drafted and submitted a Late Resolution to BPW NZ Annual Conference in April 2013, in response to serious concern expressed at the workshop, on underage and forced “Marriage” within mainly the Asian community. Resolution was carried and then submitted to NCWNZ for the Executive Conference in Wellington, in September. An amended Remit was successfully submitted to be considered by delegates.
  7. Report on the UN Training submitted to BPW NZ
  8. Attendance at the consultation undertaken by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) in preparation of drafting the NZ Universal Periodic Review (UPR) (2013-14). Completed a submission to MFAT on the situation of “Women with Disabilities” in NZ and made recommendations for action. Sent copy to the HRC for its Shadow Report.
  9. Joined LinkedIn – with a disability profile – now communicating with some in NZ but also several from Australia who have agreed to receive reports from me and compare issues with those in Australia and how Australia is/has resolved.  This will provide some benchmarking.
  10. Commenced analysing a 2013 Report from European Parliament on Discrimination Generated by Intersection of Gender and Disability (100pages)- (reference from Angela McLeod who accessed this from the International Network of Women With Disabilities (INWWD) through BPWI President’s Office).
  11. Attended the 3RD Annual National Disability Conference – 17 June in Wellington. Gained more insight, met people with whom I have been corresponding and made more contacts for continuing collaboration.
  12. Appointment made with Ministry of Women’s Affairs Director of Policy Denise Lievore and Policy Analyst Sarah McGray on the morning of 20 September in Wellington, prior to attending the NCWNZ Executive Conference as President of NCW Papakura/Franklin Branch.  BPW NZ President Carolyn Savage and First Vice President /Issues Vicky Mee, will attend with me.  The meeting relates to the requirements for the Government to report in 2014 on specific issues as per the Concluding Observations to the 2012 CEDAW Report.  We will discuss Women with Disabilities (as per the 2nd letter sent to 40+ organisations and agencies that service people with disabilities).  We had hoped to analyse the outcomes of the recent Census and Disability Survey but they will not be available from Statistics NZ until mid 2014. (I do have copy of the questions in the survey)
  13. Disabled Persons Assembly – the Chair Rachel Nobel wishes me to meet with several women who will work with me on the Report. I had hoped to meet some of them at the Disability Conference. (I met Rachel but she was a busy presenter so no group meeting). I asked if they will be available to meet when I am in Wellington 19/20 September.(Did not eventuate)
  14. Sent letter to the Chief Human Rights Commissioner David Rutherford and Disability Commissioner Paul Gibson, to express concern about the passing under urgency of the NZ Health and Disability Amendment Bill (No.2), and asking them, to communicate this new set of impediments in legislation against families supporting those with disabilities, with the Monitoring Committee for UNCRPD during their Oral Submission to their Shadow Report.
  15. I downloaded the CEDAW General Recommendations to which I have been referred to find “Women with Disabilities”. Now have General Recommendation 18 which makes reference to “disabled women.  Using GR 18, I submitted a Resolution on CEDAW, for BPW NZ to submit to BPW International Congress 2014, by mid-August, along with two Resolutions on the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) and its Optional Protocol.
  16. Attended the NCWNZ Workshop on CEDAW –“Redressing Discrimination against Women – 22 June in Wellington. I was a Panellist to report on progress.
  17. I had a month’s break and travelled to Vietnam and Cambodia.
  18. Since then have analysed responses and correspondence from my first letter sent out to organisations and agencies requesting input to the NGO Alternative Report.
  19. I have sent a second a letter to organisations/agencies etc. to follow-up with specific requests for information on discrimination/impediments experienced by women in their network/service, to collate and prepare a spreadsheet as recommended by the UN CEDAW Trainers. Timeframe for information to be sent to me is 31 October 2013.
  20. In response to my letter, I have been receiving comprehensive reports and promises of more research outcomes by 31 October.
  21. Attended the BPW NZ Northern Regional Meeting in Warkworth 8 September – presented progress as per this report and requested assistance from members to read the reports being submitted to me, and to extract the specific information required for the Alternative Report. Two members from BPW Warkworth, the mother of a third member, and two members from BPW Auckland have offered. A member of NCW Manukau Branch will assist also.
  22. On 7 September, attended the New Horizons for Women Trust Awards presentation and on 10 September, attended the hui organised by the YWCA Auckland to celebrate 120 years Suffrage of Women in NZ –“What will the future look like for women in NZ?” – gained more contacts for input to the report. Dr Jennifer Curtin of Auckland University expressed interest in the CEDAW report and provided information about student internships for 2014 – looking for research topics.  Gained contacts for Ethnic women’s groups.
  23. On 19 September, attended Suffrage celebrations in Wellington – breakfast at Parliament Buildings; attended Question Time in the House and heard MP Sue Moroney question the Minister of Women’s Affairs about the progress report (obtained by PWW-NZ Jane Pritchard under the OIA) on actions undertaken by the Ministry on the recommendations made by the CEDAW Monitoring Committee. I have copy of this progress report but any further progress will need to be requested again under the Official Information Act.
  24. On 19 September, attended the Camellia Awards presented to the corporates who best implemented the seven Women’s Empowerment Principles (promoted by UN Women NZ and BPW NZ). Event also held in Parliament Buildings – met up with the EEO Commissioner for the HRC, Dr Jackie Blue who wishes to meet with me to discuss “Women with Disabilities” for our Alternate Report to CEDAW. The HRC prepares a Shadow Report to the Government one.
  25. Met with Policy staff (Denise Lievore and Sarah McGray) at the Ministry of Women’s Affairs for a full discussion on work undertaken by me for the NCWNZ/NGO Alternate Report and the Ministry’s role in the preparation of the Government Report. They will be meeting with representatives of other Ministries at the end of October. Because of the delay in reporting of statistics from Statistics NZ, and the outcomes of the Disability Survey, the date for reporting to the UN CEDAW Committee has been extended to October 2014. The staff are endeavouring to find out if the Interim Reports in 2014 will be written only and not orally presented, and if Alternate and Shadow Reports will be accepted. I expressed my desire for collaboration with the Ministry and sharing of information. I was informed of a new campaign to be launched soon by the Ministry of Social Development – “Think Right” educating the public about people with disabilities – similar to the “It’s not okay” campaign about domestic violence.
  26. Through contact with organisations that service/support people with disabilities, I have learned about a report prepared by the official NZ monitoring committee for the UN Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and submitted to the UN Monitoring Committee for UNCRPD. The NZ Reports have not yet been orally presented but I have been informed that this report has much information that would assist me with research for our Alternate Report. I am requesting a copy.
  27. Even though the date for submission has been extended, it means that the outcomes of the Disability Survey will be known and can be included on our report. Other work will continue in the meantime.
  28. 28.   Branches of NCW are encouraged to contact me at dglenn@ihug.co.nz and to be sent copies of the letters so that members can be encouraged to contribute through personal experiences.  
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