| 02-08-2016

CEDAW pushes the Philippines for more concerted efforts

Although the Committee recognizes recent legislative endeavors by the country vis-a-vis women, it lists significant shortcomings.

    As reported last month, the status of women’s rights was under review in the 64th session of the Committee on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). In its     concluding observations, published last week, the Committee emphasizes the efforts of the Philippine government in undertaking legislative reforms, including the adoption of the     Magna Carta of Women. Yet, it also urges the country to harmonize national legislation accordingly and to establish an effective mechanism to monitor its implementation with the participation of women’s organizations.

Under the premises of     its general recommendation No. 34 (2016) on the rights of rural women, the CEDAW also calls on the Philippines to ensure rural women’s access to adequate food, as well as to water and sanitation, taking into consideration the international human rights standards of these rights. The Committee points to the urgent need to end gender-based income discrimination and improve working conditions in rural areas. 

Rural women in the Philippines account for 60% of country’s female population. The access to and control over natural resources is vital to them, as they play a key role in securing their own and their families’ food and nutritional well-being. Likewise, their right to decent work and social protection remain prerequisites for the fulfilment of rural women’s fundamental human right. 

    As echoed by FIAN Philippines in a report, women and girls face unequal access to health, employment, resources and social services. Understanding that women living in poverty - both in rural and urban areas – lack access to social security, especially those working in the informal sector, the CEDAW also recommends ensuring access to non-contributory social protection and requests to adopt gender-responsive social protection floors to ensure that all rural women have access to essential health care, childcare facilities and income security. 

FIAN International and its section in the Philippines welcome the recommendations of the Committee and will follow up their implementation.

You can access the concluding observations     here.
For more information, please contact     Slot-Tang[at]fian.org 


  • The Magna Carta of Women (R.A. 9710) is a comprehensive law that guarantees and recognizes women's basic rights. R.A. 9710 seeks to eliminate discrimination against women by recognizing, protecting, fulfilling and promoting the rights of Filipino women.
  • The General Recommendation No. 34 is the first international instrument that specifically addresses the rights of rural women. Furthermore, it is the first that explicitly recognizes the human right to adequate food and nutrition of rural women within the framework of food sovereignty.