AWARENESS RAISING AND ADVOCACY
The United Nations continues to raise awareness and advocate for gender-sensitive policing and more female officers in the United Nations.
Dialogue with Police Contributing Countries
The United Nations Police Adviser, Stefan Feller (right), Dee Dee Rodriguez, Senior Police Adviser (UNIOGBIS) and Police Commissioner Awale Abdounasir (MONUSCO, left) during a briefing at the United Nations Police week in November 2015. Photo: UN/ Mark Garten.
In addition to regular updates and briefings to the legislative committees, the United Nations Police organizes dedicated dialogue sessions with police contributing countries (PCCs). In the past, these have included a briefing by the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to PCCs in 2010. Additional dialogue includes the sharing of best practices through round tables, briefings to national visiting delegations and special events.
International Network of Female Police Peacekeepers
Field-based female police networks for officers serving United Nations Police exist in several United Nations field missions, including MINUSTAH, MONUSCO, UNAMID and UNMISS. These United Nations International Networks of Female Police Peacekeepers share experiences and raise awareness about the experience of gender mainstreaming and the need for more female police in international peace operations.
These field-based networks come together since 2009 every year at the International Association of Female Police Annual Conference (IAWP) and are joined by female officers that served the United Nations previously. The conference brings together about 600 female police officers from up to 70 countries. Participants of the United Nations delegation often participate in dedicated training sessions, exchange best practices and their network across peace operations.
In 2016, the United Nations Delegation consists of 70 participants from 26 countries, including the Chief of the Standing Police Capacity and the Police Commissioner in UNAMID. All members of the delegation currently serve in peacekeeping operations, in the United Nations Police Division, host State police services or have re-joined their national police services but served the United Nations previously.
Activities organised by the delegation include a screening of the documentary “Journey of a Thousand Miles: Peacekeepers”, five workshop panels and a training of trainer workshop on the United Nations Police Gender toolkit.
International Female Police Peacekeeper Award
Every year, at the IAWP conference, the International Female Police Peacekeeper Award is given to an outstanding female police peacekeeper serving in a UN peace operation.
The objectives of the award are to:
- To recognize internationally the outstanding accomplishments of a female police officer serving in a United Nations peace operations.
- To highlight the roles and contributions made by female police officers to United Nations peace operations.
- To encourage participation of all countries in United Nations peace operations.
- To promote an understanding of policing in peace operations.
The Award recipients served in UNMIT, UNMIL, MINUSTAH and UNAMA.
In 2015, Chief Superintendent Raluca Domuta from Romania was selected for the International Police Peacekeeper Award for her service in MINUSTAH. “Serving in a peacekeeping operation is a remarkable experience that has equipped me with a variety of skills and has given me the opportunity to learn about restoring peace, serving with pride, protecting the vulnerable and learning from diversity”. she said. Chief Superintendent Domuta was chosen as an exceptional and outstanding female police officer, who inspired those around her when, in 2010, after the earthquake she remained an example of leadership in times of turmoil, among others in search and rescue operations. In the same year, during the cholera outbreak, she was instrumental in providing security and assistance to medical staff. Working closely with the Haiti National Police (HNP) she supported the development of the gender programme and contributed to establishing a one-stop centre for victims of Sexual and Gender-based Violence.
In 2014, Police Inspector Shakti Devi from India was selected for the International Police Peacekeeper Award for her service in UNAMA and received the Award at the conference in Winnipeg Manitoba, Canada. During her service with United Nations Police in Afghanistan, during a time when a women’s fate was entwined and determined by the historical, religious, political and social forces, she contributed to the improvement of the status of female police officers in the national police. Her accomplishments include assisting in the creation of a Women’s Police Council in Herat as an example of networking, advocacy and support among female officers. The Council was later replicated in Farah. Inspector Devi also closely collaborated with the Head of the Gender and Human and Child Rights Unit in the Afghanistan Ministry of Interiour (MOI) resulting in several arrests on crimes related to sexual and gender-based violence. She has also been instrumental in promoting gender-related training and mentoring, as well as providing support for the Prosecutor for the Elimination of Violence against Women (EVAW).
In 2013, Commissioner Codou Camara from Senegal was chosen for her service in MINUSTAH as recipient of the International Police Peacekeeper Award. She received the Award during the conference in Durban, South Africa. Commissioner Camara has served in three peacekeeping missions – the Democratic Republic of Congo, Chad and in Haiti where she was deployed in 2013.
Commissioner Camara has obtained outstanding results in supporting the advancement of female police officers during her deployments. In particular, she finalized the special recruitment, equipped and organized the training of 250 female officers in the National Police of Chad. In her role as Gender Adviser, she was instrumental to set up 19 women and children police desks in Chad. When deployed in Haiti, she promoted the importance of gender mainstreaming with the Haitian national police and empowered the office on gender affairs. She also set up interviewing rooms for victims of sexual and gender-based violence to ensure confidentiality of victims.
In 2012 Constable Rezi Danismend from Turkey received the International Police Peacekeeper Award for her service in UNMIL, Liberia. She received the Award during the IAWP conference in St. John's Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada.Constable Danismend was selected for her role in leading the establishment of the first Liberian multi-agency Transnational Crime Unit. This initiative is part of the multi-agency West African Coast Initiative (WACI) aimed at supporting the ECOWAS Action Plan to counter drug trafficking and organized crime in the region. She also assisted with the development of guidance documents and standard operating procedures for the unit. Constable Danismend also facilitated the investigation of human trafficking cases and played an important role to recover abducted children and arrest the suspects.
Deputy Superintendent Shahzadi Gulfam from Pakistan was selected for the International Police Peacekeeper Award for her service in the United Nations Integrated Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT), where she played an exceptional role in supporting and protecting vulnerable persons. Twelve award applications, which represented female police officers from 11 countries serving in seven United Nations peace missions worldwide, were submitted for the 2011 award. Deputy Superintendent Gulfam received the award at the IAWP conference in Lexington, Kentucky, USA.
- Watch videos of female police peacekeepers, deployed in some of the most challenging security situation in the world
- Listen to a radio interview with Maria Appelbom, Chief of the Standing Police Capacity
- Watch the trailer of ‘Journey of a Thousand Miles: Peacekeepers’, which follows one all-female formed police unit in Haiti