What does the Unites States have in common with Iran, Sudan, Somalia and the small Pacific islands of Nauru, Palau and Tonga?
We, along with these 6 countres, are the only ones that have not ratified the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). To date, 186 out of 193 countries of the United Nations have ratified this treaty.
CEDAW is an international convention adopted in 1979 by the UN General Assembly, and it came into force September 3, 1985. CEDAW is the international bill of rights for women, and the United States is the only developed nation that has not ratified it. I am trying to figure this out …
CEDAW affirms the basic principles of human rights and equality for women around the world. It serves as a blueprint for each country to achieve progress for women and girls. The U.S. not signing it makes no sense to me. So, I ask myself that good Lutheran question: what does this mean?
Maybe it means that the American public does not support the principles and values of equality, fairness, education and basic human rights for women. Under the leadership of Presidents Reagan, Bush and Clinton, the U.S. ratified similar treaties on genocide, torture and race. Ratifying the CEDAW treaty would continue that important bipartisan tradition.
In 2010, the Obama administration strongly stated its support of CEDAW’s ratification, and has included CEDAW as one of the multilateral treaties it has identified as a priority. Ratification of the CEDAW treaty requires 67 Senators to stand together for women and has no financial cost to us as a nation. So, why hasn’t it happened? Can anyone help me understand this?