Education International
Education International

World Women’s Conference 2011: Teachers on the move for equality!

published 18 January 2011 updated 18 January 2011

More than 350 participants from around the world are set to join EI First World Women’s Conference, On the Move for Equality, in Bangkok, Thailand, from 20-23 January.

As the global union federation representing 30 million workers around the world, Education International (EI) is proud to acknowledge the contribution of teachers and their unions from early childhood to higher education towards the achievement of gender equality.

Sadly, in too many countries, gender discrimination blights the life chances and opportunities of girls and women to access education, decent work and human rights. From child labour to sexual violence, from lower wages to harassment, discrimination and threats to life itself, gender inequality destroys people and their communities. Education is the key to overcoming these barriers.

EI’s first World Women’s Conference is an opportunity to evaluate the progress made and challenges still to be overcome in achieving gender equality. It is also a chance to recognise what unions have done, and what more can be done, as well as contributing to creating a global network for women’s rights and gender equality.

Key themes to be debated at the three day event include analysis of the status of women in today’s world; how to empower girls and women through education, and how to build a plan of action to move forward in achieving gender equality. Key speakers at the conference include Thailand’s Minister of Education, Chinnaworn Bunyakiat; UNESCO Director for Gender Equality, Saniye Gülser; UN Girls’ Education Initiative (UNGEI) specialist, Maki Hayashikawa, and EI President, Susan Hopgood.

EI Deputy General Secretary, Jan Eastman, said: “This conference gives EI and its members the opportunity to come together as a global group and to look within and without to see what our course of action should be. It also gives us the chance to celebrate what has been achieved while recognising that we must remain on the move in the struggle for equality.”

EI President, Susan Hopgood, said: “Education is one of the most important means of breaking the cycle of poverty and discrimination. There is no tool more effective than the education of girls and women for human development.”