Index of "World Conference on Women Press Releases and Statements"
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U.S. Department of State
95/06/16 Focus: 4WCW Update on Preparations
Bureau of Public Affairs
Focus on 4WCW Update on Preparations
The UN Fourth World Conference on Women(4WCW),to be held in Beijing,
China, September 4-15, 1995, is intended to stimulate increased activity
at all levelsfrom local to global--to improve the status of women and
promote equality between women and men. At the conference, the U.S.
delegation will be discussing ways to ensure that women are full
partners in their families, communities, and nations, as well as on a
The UN Fourth World Conference on Women is important to Americans
because women everywhere want strong families, economic security, access
to basic and better education and health care, participation in all
levels of decision-making, personal safety, legal rights, and basic
At the conference, the United States aims to promote the advancement and
empowerment of women and to build on the commitments made at other
important UN conferences: the 1985 Women's Conference in Nairobi, the
1992 Environment and Development Conference in Rio, the 1993 Vienna
Human Rights Conference, the 1994 Cairo Population and Development
Conference (ICPD), and the 1995 Copenhagen Social Summit (WSSD).
The U.S. will provide leadership on the following issues:
-- Human rights of women, including actions to end violence against
-- A life-span approach to health and education;
-- Efforts to balance work and family responsibilities of both women
-- Economic security;
-- The importance of the participation of the non-governmental sector
as partner in building communities--locally, nationally, and
-- The full participation of women in political and economic decision-
The U.S. Government has appointed a strong team to lead the official
delegation to the UN Fourth World Conference on Women. First Lady
Hillary Rodham Clinton will serve as Honorary Chair of the Delegation;
no decision has been made about her attendance at the conference.
Ambassador Madeleine K. Albright, U.S. Permanent Representative to the
United Nations, will chair the Delegation; Donna Shalala, U.S. Secretary
for Health and Human Services is Co-chair. Under Secretary of State for
Global Affairs Timothy Wirth is Alternate Chair, and former Member of
Congress Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky is Deputy Chair/Director of the
Delegation. Veronica Biggins, former assistant to the President, will
serve as Vice Chair.
Other members of the delegation currently include Lynn Cutler of
Washington, DC, Maria Antonietta Berriozabal of Texas, Arthenia Joyner
of Florida, Dorothy Lamm of Colorado, and Linda Tarr-Whelan of
Washington, DC. The White House is expected to name the full delegation
by early summer.
The final preparatory committee negotiating session, or "Prepcom,"
concluded its pre-conference work in New York City on April 7, 1995.
During the three-week session, delegates discussed the platform, to
which they added a section on girls and young women and a one-page
Declaration to accompany the draft Platform for Action (see box).
The current draft of the Platform for Action contains distinct elements
that reflect a developing worldwide consensus that the only way to bring
about equality, development, and peace is to empower women by
integrating them into mainstream society where they can work in
partnership with men. Such a consensus did not exist 10 years ago at the
Non-governmental organization (NGO) accreditation to the conference also
was deliberated at the prepcom. There are now more than 2,700 NGOs
eligible to send representatives to observe the World Conference. The
status of the additional 1,500 NGOs still seeking accreditation will be
determined at the 1995 Substantive Session of the UN Economic and Social
Council (ECOSOC) meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, during June and July.
NGO Forum Site
Traditionally, there has been an effective working relationship between
NGOs and governmental delegations at intergovernmental world
conferences. In recent years, NGOs have organized parallel meetings
known as "NGO Fora" that are held in conjunction with these conferences.
The fora normally are located near official conference sites, thus
facilitating dialogue among governmental and non-governmental
representatives, and resulting in strengthened action plans.
On June 8, Supatra Masdit, Convener of the NGO Forum, signed an
agreement with the China Organizing Committee finalizing the site
details for the NGO Forum. The official opening will take place at the
Olympic Stadium (located across from the Beijing International
Convention Center, site of the 4WCW) on August 30. The majority of NGO
Forum activities will take place in Huariou at the Scenic Tourist Area,
about 33 miles from Beijing. The agreement also calls for a satellite
facility in Beijing near the conference site for participants at the NGO
Forum to meet with Observer NGOs to the conference and government
The U.S. Government is pleased that the UN, China, and NGO planners have
reached agreement on what promises to be the largest gathering of its
kind ever held. Recognizing a successful NGO Forum as an integral part
of the World Conference, the U.S. will continue to work together with
the UN, other member states, and the NGO community to encourage this
Conference Logistics and Contact Information
NGOs eligible to send representatives to the World Conference are
receiving notification from the UN. After receiving notification, groups
should immediately forward the names and addresses of designated
individuals (up to two for national NGOs and five for international) to
the Secretariat for the World Conference (see address below). The UN
will mail confirming letters to all individual representatives in mid-
All deadlines for application for accreditation to the official
conference and registration for the NGO Forum have passed.
NGO observer representatives can register for photo identification
badges near the Beijing International Convention Center beginning August
28 upon presentation of a photo ID and individual confirmation letter
from the UN. A photocopy of the UN's letter stating that the NGO has
been accredited along with an original letter from the NGO stating that
the individual is one of the group's designated representatives will
Visas to China will be issued by the Chinese embassy and consulates.
Visas are valid only for three months and, therefore, should not be
requested until late June at the earliest for NGO Forum attendees; early
July for those participating in the conference. See box for information
about visas to China.
It is recommended that Forum and Conference participants consider
purchasing travelers insurance to cover all reasonable contingencies for
canceling your trip.
Due to the change of site to Huairou, all Forum participants are
required to fill out a "New Hotel Reservation Form" that is being sent
out by the NGO Forum. The deadline for returning this new form to the
China Organizing Committee is July 5, 1995. The address for the
China Organizing Committee
Fourth World Conference on Women and NGO Forum on Women
No. 15 Jianguomen St.
Phone: 861-5221133, ext: 3006
State Department. Under Secretary of State for Global Affairs Timothy
Wirth established the Global Conference Secretariat to coordinate all
U.S. Government preparations and follow-up for the conference. Ms.
Theresa Loar is the Director of the Global Conference Secretariat.
Global Conference Secretariat
2201 C St. NW
Department of State
Washington, DC 20520
United Nations. Ms. Gertrude Mongella of Tanzania is the Secretary
General of the Conference. Contact :
UN Secretariat of the Fourth World Conference on Women
Division for the Advancement of Women
Two United Nations Plaza
New York, NY 10017
Fax: 212 963-3463
NGO Forum. Ms. Supatra Masdit is the Convenor of the NGO Forum. Contact:
NGO Forum on Women, Beijing '95
211 E. 43rd St., Suite 1500
New York, NY 10017
Phone: 212-922-9267 or 922-9268
Fax: 212-922-9269 (###)
The Global Conference Secretariat of the U.S. Department of State is
sponsoring monthly public meetings to discuss preparations for the
Women's Conference. All interested individuals are invited to attend.
The meetings will be held 3:30-5:00 p.m. at the Office of Personnel
Management (OPM) auditorium in Washington, DC, 1900 E St. NW, on the
following dates: July 11 and August 1.
In addition, a series of substantive discussions on specific sections of
the conference's Platform for Action are open to the public. These
discussions will be held in room 1350 at OPM 3:30-5:00 p.m. on the
Education/Girl-Child: June 19
Poverty/Economics: June 22
UN Systems/Resources: June 23
Diversity: June 30
There will be an additional meeting in New York on Thursday, June 22 to
be held from 2:00-3:30 p.m. in UN Conference Room 2.(###)
Other Information Sources
Information Hotline. Department of State Global Conference Secretariat
hotline for recorded information on public meetings and other special
events related to the 4WCW is 202-663-3070 or, for the hearing impaired,
Special Needs Information. U.S. participants with special needs should
contact the Global Conference Secretariat on 202-647-3129 several weeks
prior to scheduled events so that reasonable accommodation can be made.
Print Sources. Copies of the draft Platform for Action are available
from the Conference Secretariat at the United Nations. Requests may be
made by fax (dial 212-963-3463) or by writing to:
Secretariat for the Fourth World Conference on Women
Division for the Advancement of Women, Room DC2-1234
New York, NY 10017
Visa Information. The Department of State Bureau of Consular Affairs
publication "Foreign Entry Requirements" lists the address of the
Chinese embassy along with all consulates in the United States. To
request a copy by fax, dial 202-647-3000 and enter publication number
10007 at the appropriate prompt. Copies of this publication are also
available at U.S. passport offices, listed in the blue pages of your
local telephone directory.
Electronic Access. Other information about the 4WCW is available
electronically through the Department of State Foreign Affairs Network
(DOSFAN) under the heading "UN Fourth World Conference on Women" under
the Bureau of International Organization Affairs/United Nations section
of the Global Affairs listing. Visa information is available in the
Consular and Travel Information section. DOSFAN is accessible three ways
on the Internet:
DOSFAN is also accessible from most commercial on-line services. For
additional technical information about DOSFAN, contact John Shuler by e-
mail at email@example.com. or by phone on 312-996-2738.
Copies of the draft Platform for Action are also available via e-mail
under the Association for Progressive Communications (APC) network at
the following addresses:
The information in this publication is not copyrighted; we encourage you
to reproduce and disseminate this Focus to your colleagues and other
interested parties. (###)
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