accordance with its multi-year programme of work, the Commission
considered two thematic issues at its 48th
session, in addition to a number of other topics and items that
are regularly on its agenda. Consideration of the thematic issues
is the core of the Commission's annual work, and a critical contribution
to the systematic follow-up to the Beijing
Platform for Action and the outcome
document of the 23rd
special session of the General Assembly. Focusing on selected
topics allows the Commission to strengthen and accelerate implementation
of the recommendations in these documents, to further refine the
global policy framework for gender equality as it relates to the
themes, and to ensure practical action at all levels. It is also
an opportunity to reinforce links between implementation of these
gender-specific instruments and other global policy instruments,
such as the Millennium
Security Council resolution 1325 on women, peace and security.
first topic considered by the Commission in its 48th session
addressedthe role of men and boys in achieving gender equality.
Division for the Advancement of Women convened an online
discussion and an expert group meeting to support the preparations
on this topic. The online discussion engaged over 300 participants
from 70 countries to discuss the role of men and boys in achieving
gender equality. More than 80 substantive postings were made by
activists, practitioners and researchers, from 28 different countries.
In collaboration with the International Labour Organization (ILO),
the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and the
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Division for the
Advancement of Women held an expert
group meeting from 21 to 24 October 2003, generously hosted
by the Government of Brazil.
The report of the online discussion and the report of the expert
group meeting provided essential input for the
report (E/CN.6/2004/9). The report of the Secretary-General provided
an overview of the role of men and boys in achieving gender equality.
It specifically focused on socialization and education; and the
role of men and boys in achieving gender equality in the labour
market and the workplace; in sharing of family responsibilities,
including caring roles; and in preventing HIV/AIDS. It emphasized
that men can bring about change in attitudes, roles, relationships
and access to resources and decision-making which are critical for
achieving equality between women and men. It underlined the need
for men to be actively involved in developing and implementing legislation
and policies that foster gender equality, and in providing positive
role models for other men to promote gender equality.
Consideration of the thematic issue "The Role of Men and Boys in
Achieving Gender Equality" was further enriched by the
that took place on Tuesday 2 March 2004.