United Nations

UN Police

International Female Police
Peacekeeper Award

The International Female Police Peacekeeper Award is a competitive award given to an outstanding female police peacekeeper serving in a UN peace operation.

The objectives of the award are to:

  • To promote an understanding of police in peace operations throughout the world;
  • To highlight the efforts of female police in global peace operations;
  • To increase understanding of the roles of women officers in various countries;
  • To encourage participation in UN peace operations by all countries of
    the world;
  • To promote membership in the UN International Female Police Peacekeepers Network,
  • To increase international understanding and awareness of women in
    international police peacekeeping and the UN International Female Police
    Peacekeepers Network;
  • To recognize the outstanding accomplishments of a female police
    peacekeeper.

The award is organized in collaboration with the International Association of Women Police (IAWP) Awards programme and delivered during the annual conference of the IAWP.

2011 Award Recipient

Deputy Superintendent Shahzadi Gulfam (Pakistan) serving in the United Nations Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT).

Deputy Superintendent Shahzadi Gulfam's portrait.

Deputy Superintendent Shahzadi Gulfam.

Assisting the Vulnerable

The United Nations Police Division in the Office of Rule of Law and Security Institutions (OROLSI), Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO), and the International Association of Women Police (IAWP) International Scholarship Committee are very proud to announce the recipient of the 2011 International Female Police Peacekeeper Award, Deputy Superintendent Shahzadi Gulfam from Pakistan. She is currently deployed in the United Nations Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT) as the United Nations Police (UNPOL) Team Leader posted in the Timor-Leste National Police (PNTL) Vulnerable Persons Unit (VPU) in the capital Dili.

After completing her studies, Officer Gulfam joined the Punjab Police in March 1985. During her professional police career of over two decades, she performed equally well at the national and international level. In Pakistan working for the Investigation Unit she supervised 150 police officers conducting criminal investigations. Later she worked in the Punjab Highway Patrol and organized traffic awareness courses for the general public. She played a key role in improving the Traffic System in the province by strictly implementing discipline to curb illegal practices and protect vulnerable citizens from corrupt police officers.

Officer Gulfam was the first female police officer to represent Pakistan when she was deployed in the UN Mission in Bosnia-Herzegovina in 1997. She has subsequently served in UN Missions in Kosovo in 1999 and Timor-Leste in 2007.

While serving as a Recruitment and Selection coordinator for Kosovo Police Service (KPS) with United Nations Mission in Kosovo (1999-2001) Officer Gulfam used to visit the schools and colleges in rural areas to reach out to women and motivate them to join the police service, which had very few female officers at the time. She explained the role of police, the added value of a gender balanced service and the impact that women can make. She is proud to have contributed to the national and international efforts to increase the number of female officers in KPS at its inception. By 2010, there were over 1,000 female police officers in this service.

Officer Gulfam was redeployed in 2010 in the United Nations Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT).

“UNPOL Shahzadi Gulfam has shown enthusiasm, diligence and zeal in her work with the Vulnerable Persons Unit in Dili. Sadly in post-conflict Timor-Leste domestic violence is a common crime and victims often find it difficult to file complaints,” says UNMIT Police Commissioner Luis Carillho and adds that “despite these difficulties Officer Gulfam has played an exceptional role in supporting and protecting vulnerable persons”.

In her current capacity, UNPOL Officer Gulfam is responsible for facilitating the referrals to shelter and medical assistance to victims of domestic violence, as well as for reporting on missing persons and human trafficking. Her duties include liaising with the Justice Ministry to provide legal redress to victims. She also coordinates with health institutions on the provision of psychological support to victims. As a team leader she assesses the quality of service offered at shelters for vulnerable people who experienced violence.

Officer Gulfam has played an exceptional role in bringing suspects to the courts of law and providing justice to the needy. When she joined the Vulnerable Persons Unit (VPU) a total of 411 cases were pending investigation since 2007. “And in one year after great effort I helped to solve 72 pending cases,” explained Gulfam.

She was instrumental in involving a number of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in efficiently assisting victims of sexual assault and abuse. In addition, she has diligently carried out awareness programmes regarding the new Timorese law that criminalized domestic violence that was approved in May 2010.

By visiting remote areas of Timor-Leste, Officer Gulfam again serves as a role-model for local girls and women inspiring them to join the national police service.

The International Female Police Peacekeeper Award will be delivered at the opening ceremony of the International Association of Women Police (IAWP) annual training conference on 21 August 2011 in Lexington, Kentucky, USA. Twelve award applications, which represent female police officers from 11 countries serving in seven United Nations peace missions worldwide, were submitted for this competitive award.