Australian National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security
On International Women’s Day, 8 March 2012, the Government launched the Australian National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security 2012-2018. WILPF Australia, including YWILPF attended the launch of the Australian National Action Plan (NAP) at Garden Island Naval Base, Sydney.
The launch of the NAP is an important milestone and YWILPF congratulates the Australian government in taking this critical first step. However, there are key areas absent from the NAP, such as an allocated budget, disarmament, domestic implementation and narrow civil society engagement, which threaten to undermine the NAP’s purpose and efficacy. As such, WILPF and YWILPF Australia remain committed to continued lobbying and consultation with government to ensure the full implementation of the NAP and it’s improvement. To get involved see what you can do below, and read on for history about the NAP and WILPF’s involvement in its development.
What you can do to ensure the NAP is implemented:
While the Australian Government has finalised National Action Plan, it is now up to Civil Society to keep a watching brief on the government’s promises of proper implementation.
To ensure continued engagement through the implementation process, WILPF, ACFID, UN Women Australia, and the Gender Institute at ANU will jointly host the first Annual Civil Society Dialogue on Women Peace and Security. The output from this dialogue will be a civil society report card on the implementation of the National Action Plan. The civil society report cards will form the basis of shadow reporting to parliament about the National Action Plan.
The dialogue will be held on the 15th of April at University House, Australian National University, Canberra. You can find more information, and register to participate at the ACFID website.
YWILPF will not be able to attend, but to ensure the views of young women are included, we will be providing a written statement, which we will post to our website.
The National Action Plan was designed to be a responsive document, and there is room for its constant improvement, even if you are not able to participate in formal review and consultation processes.
Write an email to the newly appointed Minister for the Status of Women Julie Collins MP at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You might like to:
- introduce yourself,
- outline your concerns,
- congratulate the Australian government for developing a National Action Plan,
- let the Minister know that you want to ensure the NAP’s full implementation.
YWILPF will keep this site updated when important opportunities, such as scheduled parliamentary reviews occur.
Want to do more? Send us an email at email@example.com to join and get involved!
About the NAP:
The National Action Plan (NAP) on Women, Peace and Security recognises the importance of ensuring that Australia’s government and security institutions incorporate a gender perspective in all peace and security efforts, both at home and abroad.
The final Australian NAP incorporates a number of important elements critical to United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 and and a suite of other Resolutions which outline the interdependence of women’s inclusion in prevention, protection, relief and recovery, from conflict. These pillars form the normative ‘pillars’ and are underpinned by the fundamental need for women’s participation in all of these things. The Australian NAP came more than a decade after UNSCR 1325, and builds on lessons from NAPs in other countries, and is therefore considered a ‘second generation NAP’ . The importance of continuing consultation with civil society and parliamentary reporting on the progress of the NAP are some of the key lessons learnt elsewhere that are built into the Australian NAP.
Background to the Australian NAP – advocacy and lobbying:
In 2010, after much advocating and lobbying on behalf of women’s rights groups in Australia and around the globe, the Australian Government committed to developing a National Action Plan to map out implementation of all the Women, Peace and Security Resolutions (of the UN Security Council).
WILPF Australia was highly involved in lobbying and research on and for the NAP. WILPF’s involvement included conducting wide consultations within Australia on the development of a NAP. You can view the results of these consultations (see WILPF Final Report) and and a discussion paper online.
In August 2011 the Australian Government Office for Women released a Consultation Draft of the NAP on Women, Peace and Security.
What we have done:
Having formed in mid 2011, YWILPF (as a youth centred working group of WILPF Australia) lobbied and advocated the Australian government to move further on its commitment to women and security. YWILPF authored a comprehensive submission to government about the draft NAP, and was invited to participate in a government initiated Roundtable. Participants in the Roundtable spoke directly to government about improving accountability, what appropriate funding for the NAP would look like, and the need for Australia to promote women, peace and security through out the Asia-Pacific region.
Why we are doing it:
The formation of NAP in Australia is an issue that is close to YWILPF personally and fundamental to achieving the promotion of women to full and equal participation in all of societies’ activities. We believe the overall sentiment of the WPS agenda to be characterised by an anti-militaristic human security approach to global security. And this, we believe was not captured adequately with the NAP in its current form.
Above all, we wish Australia to move beyond recognising women in conflict solely as victims in need of military protection. It is of our view that the best protection is the protection afforded by social stability, accessible housing, adequate healthcare, education across the life stages, community services, food security and self determination in life trajectory. Security is more assured by recognition that women’s roles are various, and by assuring women space for their voices, views, opinions and achievements to be heard and advanced.