While gearing up for the 10th country programme cycle, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) organized a thematic consultation on Gender and Rights. Distinguished guests were invited who shared their thoughts on how UNFPA can bolster its work to foreground gender across all thematic areas and make sure that we leave no one behind. Nidhi Goyal was a panelist for this consultation held on 30th September, 2021. Other speakers on the panel were Madhu Mehra, Dhanashri Brahme and Vidushi Chaturvedi.
Madhu Mehra remarked that it is time to shift accountability, understand the drivers behind bad practices and address the root causes. Criminalisation of vulnerable individuals is not a solution to anything and UNFPA can come into the picture here. It can generate evidence for policy advocacy and strengthening systems.
Dhanashri Brahme added that it is important to continue having discussions on voices, choices and agencies, strengthen connections with the communities UNFPA works with and enhance advocacy at the policy level. It is integral that organizations like UNFPA maintain their flexibility to respond to emerging issues and challenges.
Sharing her thoughts on gender and accessibility, Nidhi goyal said that “Accessibility starts with access to ‘i’. Since People with Disabilities are not a homogenous group, it is important that they have access to ‘i’ in diverse formats so that they can access the services they need. UNFPA can play a vital role in addressing these gaps.”
UNFPA should continue its support to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, India on strengthening the ‘Pre-Conception and PreNatal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT Act). There is a need for greater advocacy as well as large scale communication campaigns for nuanced gender sensitization.
UNFPA’s tweet thread to this panel is here.