New York, 2 March 2007
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Organized by the Inter-Parliamentary Union

The IPU is organizing its Third Annual Meeting of Women Speakers of Parliament on the occasion of the 51st Session of the Commission on the Status of Women

The meeting will be held on 2 March 2007, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, in Room 8

This meeting, open to all women Speakers of Parliament, will discuss the role of women Speakers of Parliament in protecting and empowering the girl-child - the next generation of women. The debates will be introduced by experts and followed by discussions between participants.

The first meeting of Women Speakers of Parliament was held in 2005 on the occasion of the World Conference of Speakers of Parliament. The second meeting was held in March 2006 and debated the theme of women’s political empowerment. (See the final report)



Presentation by Leslie R. Wolfe [PDF]
Remarks by Ms. Christine Egerszegi-Obrist [PDF]
Presentation by Dr. Musimbi Kanyoro [PDF]
Provisional agenda [HTML] [PDF]


Women in Politics
51st session of the Commission on the Status of Women
50th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women
49th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women

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10 - 10.10 a.m.Inaugural session
Introductory remarks by Mr. Pier-Ferdinando Casini, President of the Inter-Parliamentary Union
10.10 - 10.30 a.m. Key note address:
Ms. Ann Veneman, Executive Director of UNICEF
10.30 - 11.15 a.m. Session one: Empowering the girl child: providing opportunities and support
What is necessary to support the development of girls and their empowerment? How important is education? What can women Speakers do to ensure that sufficient funds targeting girl children are allocated at the national and international levels? What has helped the women Speakers themselves become leaders and overcome obstacles related to their gender?

Ms. Mercedes Cabanillas Bustamente, President of the Congress of the Republic of Peru
Ms. Musimbi Kanyoro, Secretary General, Young Women Christian Association (YWCA)

11.15 - 12 noon Session two: Making Parliament more responsive to the needs of the children and in particular the girl child.
What can women Speakers of Parliament do to enhance Parliament's responsiveness to the needs of the girl child? How can women Speakers help to bring the voice of children to Parliament? What mechanisms exist or can be developed to strengthen the involvement of children in parliament?

Ms. Christine Egerszegi-Obrist, President of the National Council, Switzerland
Ms. Anne-Marie Goetz, Chief Advisor, Governance, Peace and Security, UNIFEM

12 noon - 12.30 p.m. Session three: Women Speakers: role models for the next generation?
Can women Speakers influence women and girls as successful role models? What can constitute a positive female role model in the political world but also in society in general? How can the public be made more aware of the achievements of women Speakers?
Ms. Barbara Prammer, President of the Nationalrat, Austria
Ms. Leslie Wolfe, President of The Center for Women Policy Studies, USA
12.30 - 12.50 Conclusions
Discussion on the 2008 Meeting of Women Speakers of Parliament: objectives, content, structure.
12.50 - 1 p.m. Group photo
1.15 p.m. Lunch in honour of women Speakers with senior UN Officials

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