Interfaith Service of Remembrance
again remembered women murdered for standing up for their rights. We especially honored Honduran activists
Berta Cáceres and Lesbia Yaneth Urquia, both murdered for trying to stop a hydroelectric project that threatened water and land.
The Temple of Understanding co-organized three sessions, including a session with DPI/NGO (UN Department of Public Information) entitled
"Women as Roots of Change: Sustainable Food Production and Sovereignty."
Speakers included Sister Celine Paramunda, Medical Mission Sisters; Betty Lyons (Onondaga Nation), American Indian Law Alliance (photo on right); Roberto Mukaro Borrerro, International Indian Treaty Council (photo on left); and Dr. Chantal Line Carpentier, Chief, New York UNCTAD.
Our session with the Women's Major Group and UNCTAD focused on gender justice in trade. UNCTAD has a set of online publications
that are part of their gender initiative. They write, "Taking into account gender perspectives in macro-economic policy, including trade policy, is essential to pursuing inclusive and sustainable development and to achieving fairer and beneficial outcomes for all."
Our session "Roots of Change: Reclaiming Economics for Women and Community" gave the audience an opportunity to exchange personal views and voice heartfelt concerns. We are especially grateful for speaker
Sister Celine Paramunda
(Medical Mission Sisters), as well as speaker
Crystal Simeoni (FEMNET), who brought a
background in rural economic development and fighting inequality.
US Cutting Funding to the United Nations Population Fund
Just after CSW61, we learned that the US is cutting its funding to UNFPA. Our wonderful colleague Azza Karam of UNFPA spoke at our October event about her efforts to have the religious service providers recognized. Asking those providing food, shelter, medical care and education about what is needed in specific locations is crucial to effectively enacting the Sustainable Development Goals. We at the Temple of Understanding are deeply concerned about the cuts that will prevent UNFPA from delivering essential services to women, babies, and families around the globe.