Women’s Constitutional Voices is dedicated to supporting women and girls to:
- equally and fully participate in every task of a constitution-making process — from lobbying for constitutional reforms, building coalitions, conducting civic education to debating, adopting, drafting and implementing the constitution.
- build constitutions that promote gender justice and reflect women’s aspirations.
- document, recognize and learn from women’s vital contributions to building constitutions that promote gender justice and sustainable peace.
WCV also encourages and recognizes the key roles men and youth play to promote gender justice.
Why is ensuring women’s voices in constitution-making critical?
We live in an age of constitution-making. Since 1975 over 200 new constitutions have been adopted, typically in response to conflict. Every year as many as 20 national constitutions are reformed or adopted, and another 20 or more constitutional reform processes are considered or initiated. Each of these processes represent a critical opportunity to promote gender justice and a durable peace. The stakes are high. If women are sidelined from fully and equally participating in reforming and implementing their constitution they are traditionally marginalized in subsequent political processes. Moreover, research shows that women’s participation in constitution-making is essential to secure sustainable peace, economic development and gender-sensitive statebuilding.
“Effective participatory constitution-making has to provide for women’s equal representation in the process and outcome. No process which excludes or marginalizes the majority of the population can be representative. No constitution which has faled to fully ensure the perspectives and concerns of women can be seen as fully legitimate over time.”
Mary Robinson, Former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.