Website Asia Pacific Women Law and Development (APWLD)
Womanifesto: Combat Authoritarianism and Advance Participatory Democracy
Background: Why Womanifesto
Women’s participation and leadership in decision making at all levels, starting in the domestic sphere and extending to the highest levels of government, is a fundamental prerequisite for a just and equitable world and for participatory, accountable democracies. At present, not only are women under-represented in legislatures across the world, and particularly in Asia and the Pacific region, the socio-economic and cultural barriers make it difficult for women to fully exercise their democratic rights and political power.
Since the early 2000, Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD) has worked to build women’s capacity to increase women’s representation and transformative leadership in political and policy building processes. In 2018, based on the critical reflection of the state of women’s political participation and leadership, APWLD decided to adopt a new strategy called ‘Womanifesto’. Womanifesto–women’s agenda for change–has long been used by women’s movements to ensure elections are fought around policies demanding just, equitable and transformative changes that shift power relations and uphold women’s human rights. In APWLD, the Womanifesto is envisioned as a critical organising tool for women to influence the electoral process, hold elected leaders accountable to their promises in advancing women’s human rights, equality and Development Justice, and advance feminist participatory democracy.
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