Image credit: ICC - Photo: 2018

ICC Leaders Join in Global Initiative to Break Down Gender Barriers

By Robert Johnson

THE HAGUE (IDN) – Top officials of the International Criminal Court (“ICC” or “the Court”) – President Chile Eboe-Osuji, Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda and Registrar Peter Lewis – have joined  the International Gender Champions network, an important initiative to break down gender barriers at all levels.

This global leadership network brings together decision-makers determined to break down gender barriers and make gender equality a working reality in their spheres of influence.

The network was launched in July 2015 at the Palais des Nations in Geneva and hubs have been established in New York, Vienna, and Nairobi. It counts over 200 active Champions and Alumni worldwide, including the UN Secretary General, heads of UN offices and organizations, ministers, ambassadors and permanent representatives, and NGO, academic and business leaders.

The new The Hague Hub will be officially launched on February 5, 2019. Den Haag webpage >>

“The International Criminal Court needs to reflect in all its relevant policies the goal of equal representation of women and men – from all regions – in its workforce”, ICC President Chile Eboe-Osuji stated.

By becoming International Gender Champions, the three officials agree to support the International Gender Champions Panel Parity Pledge. This pledge calls on the individual Gender Champion to challenge the absence of female speakers by discussing panel composition with event organisers, recommending female speakers, and creating a positive mind-set for the inclusion of women in all discussions affecting society.

ICC leadership also collectively committed to establishing an ICC Focal Point for Women Mechanism within the Court, to systematically assess and strengthen the status of women within the organisation.

“Equality for women is progress for all. Until women and men can stand as full equals the world over, our work is not done. We have a collective responsibility to continuously raise gender awareness and advance gender parity,” ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda emphasised.

The three officials will also take concrete action to raise gender awareness and advance gender parity among ICC staff. Initiatives include introducing a mentorship programme tailored for female staff; promoting access to professional development trainings to develop career-enhancing leadership and management skills; and organising gender awareness trainings for staff. 

As summarised by ICC Registrar Peter Lewis, these tangible commitments will contribute to building “a workplace that allows everyone to give of their best and advance in accordance with their full potential.” [IDN-InDepthNews – 04 December 2018]

Image credit: ICC

IDN is flagship agency of the International Press Syndicate. –

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