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September 11, 2012

Caribbean Women Parliamentarians Speak Out onHuman Trafficking and Women's Human Rights

The Center for Women Policy Studies is honored and proud to share the leadership of the women Members of Parliament from the Caribbean region who participated in our GlobalPOWER® Caribbean program in June of 2012.  As advocates for women’s human rights both within their Parliaments and in their constituencies, these women leaders take their place in the forefront of efforts to address the crisis of international trafficking as a women’s human rights crisis that requires sustained and committed engagement by elected and appointed officials, civil society and business leaders both in the region and throughout the world. 

We invite our colleagues to endorse the Caribbean Parliamentarians’ Statement; please send an email of endorsement to:  cwps@centerwomenpolicy.org.

Statement on Human Trafficking as a Women’s Human Rights Crisis

GlobalPOWER® Caribbean

Center for Women Policy Studies

June 11-13, 2012

Washington, DC

  WHEREAS nine elected and appointed women representatives from seven countries across the Caribbean region met under the auspices of GlobalPOWER®, a project of the Center for Women Policy Studies, from June 11 through June 13, 2012 in Washington DC, and

  WHEREAS the theme of this convening was the international trafficking of women and girls as a global women’s human rights crisis, the need to confront the root causes of this crisis and to form sustainable partnerships in order to most effectively do so, and

  WHEREAS the participants deliberated on the causes of trafficking in persons, including poverty, discriminatory policies and practices, limited access to education, restrictive reproductive rights and health policies, the women and HIV/AIDS epidemic, and violence against women.

  WE RECALL, INVOKE, AND ACKNOWLEDGE international conventions dealing with women’s human rights, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action adopted by the Fourth World Conference on Women, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, theInternational Conference on Population and Development (ICPD), and specifically, the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children.

  We, the Undersigned, RESOLVE: 

*To pursue vigorously the realization of the right of all women and girls to live free from poverty, violence, discrimination and vulnerability to trafficking;

*To raise awareness of trafficking in persons and its causes, to enforce existing laws and to enact new required legislation to prevent trafficking in persons, prosecute  traffickers, and protect the rights of trafficked persons and those vulnerable to trafficking and to ensure enforcement and implementation of these laws through Parliamentary oversight and provision of resources;

  *To hold accountable all State agencies and regulatory bodies responsible for the effective alignment of state resources, priorities, systems and procedures to strengthen their capacity to more effectively prevent and respond to trafficking in persons;

  *To hold acountable donors and our States on aid effectiveness and, in particular, to call for alignment of aid with our States’ priorities, systems and procedures, so that they can strengthen capacities.

  WE CALL UPON Heads of State, Parliaments, the Judiciary, international organizations, multilateral and bilateral aid agencies, and non-governmental organizations to immediately allocate resources to address and eliminate the scourge of international trafficking in persons and the denial and abuse of women’s human rights.

  WE FURTHER CALL for the immediate implementation of  an intersectoral program for Victim Restitution Services as a form of affirmative action for, and on behalf of, all victims of trafficking in persons.

SIGNED BY:

The Honorable Gail Christian
Member of Parliament
ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA
The Honorable Malaka Parker
Member of Parliament
ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

The Honorable Irene Sandiford-Garner
Member of Parliament
Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Health BARBADOS

The Honorable Pulcheria Teul
Former Member of Parliament
BELIZE 
The Honorable Marlene Malahoo Forte
Member of Parliament
JAMAICA
The Honorable Alvina Bertram Reynolds
Member of Parliament
Minister of Health, Wellness, Human Services and Gender Relations cccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccc cc ST. LUCIA
The Honorable Vynnette Frederick
Member of Parliament
ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES
The Honorable Lyndira Oudit
Member of Parliament
Vice President of the Senate THE REPUBLIC OF TRINIDAD THE REPUBLIC OF TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO
The Honorable Verna St. Rose Greaves cccccccccccc Member of Parliament Minister of Gender, Youth and Child Development ffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffff fffff THE REPUBLIC OF TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO

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Our Mission: To promote women's human rights through enlightened public policy