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Speech: Acting stronger to keep the promises of Generation Equality

As we gather today, just over a year after the Generation Equality Forum in Mexico City and Paris, I am here to tell you that we must take stronger action to ensure that the promises of Generation Equality are outfits. As Executive Director of UN Women, this commitment to stronger action for Generation Equality is my top priority.

I am therefore delighted to announce today that I have new partners in these engagements who will energize our next phase through their participation in a multi-stakeholder leadership advisory group. These are the governments of Tanzania, the United States, South Africa, Sweden and Georgia as well as, ex officio, the governments of France and Mexico. For philanthropy, the Gates Foundation and the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation. For the UN and international organizations, UNFPA, the Inter-Parliamentary Union and the International Telecommunication Union. For Civil Society, Women’s Center for Legal Aid and Counselling, Asamblea Nacional Politica de Mujeres, Shifting the Power Coalition, Global Fund for Women and Initiative for Gender Equality and Sexual and Reproductive Health . For youth organizations, the YP Foundation and Fridays for Future. For adolescent girls’ organizations, ASODI-Women’s Association for Rural Development and Peace and Amplify Girls. Other members are confirmed and announcements will follow soon. Their collective leadership will be crucial.

Now is the time to keep pushing to maintain and increase our momentum. Generation Equality was not and is not a one-time event. It is a sustained journey. A journey that must be underpinned by accountability, delivery and results.

So, where are we today with Generation Equality? I would like to acknowledge that strong initial progress has been made. We have more than doubled the number of Generation Equality engagements from Paris, from 1,000 to over 2,500 today. And, as the first results of the accountability report will demonstrate today, there is positive progress. Commitments are implemented and a large number of new partnerships are energized.

This month I have seen ample evidence of all of your continued progress and support – at our Board of Directors and throughout my meetings this week at the high level of the United Nations General Assembly with heads of state and ministers.

The seeds that were planted in Mexico City and Paris are beginning to bloom around the world. Yet we need to do much more to ensure that the promises of Generation Equality are delivered.

First, we need to up our game when it comes to reporting and accountability. So far, we only have data on 31% of commitments. We are grateful for these responses. But it’s not enough. We need the big picture to achieve accountability and momentum. The missing data is what will show where we are on track and where we are falling behind. I call on all decision makers to uphold their reporting commitment.

Second, we must do more to increase resources for current and new Generation Equality commitments. We know that so many actors committed to the Generation Equality vision need more resources to meet and expand their commitments or drive new ones. This is particularly the case for financing bold commitments by youth and feminist movements. We must not allow women’s rights to continue to be undermined through underinvestment and lack of funding. We should not.

Third, we all need to expand Generation Equality. Securing the promise of Generation Equality requires us to expand our commitments, extend our geographic reach and catalyze new transformative engagements. There is still so much work to do. The 2023 Generation Equality Forum in New York is halfway through our Generation Equality journey and halfway to the SDGs. Alongside the SDG Summit, it will be a critical moment to bring together these three imperatives: ensuring accountability, mobilizing resources and energizing new commitments in the urgent context of accelerating the SDGs.

My call to all of you today, as we turn to the Generation Equality Forum 2023, is to redouble your efforts. Double your accountability and reports. Double what you can do to energize resources, especially for civil society and youth work. And double down to make a meaningful and lasting impact.

You have my personal leadership commitment to strengthening the convening role of UN Women to support your collective vision and work.

One year from now, at the Generation Equality Forum in New York, I want us all to be here together with pride. With evidence of success, with powerful stories of impact, with the vast majority of decision makers fully accountable – and with the confidence, momentum and collective power that comes from knowing that SDG5, the platform Beijing’s form of action and our collective pledges are within our sight and within reach.

Together, we have created an unprecedented opportunity. Let’s move forward together to realize this promise.

I thank you.

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