CEDAW Convention

The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) is the principal international human rights treaty addressing the rights of women. The Convention has 30 articles defining prohibited discrimination against women. States that have ratified the Convention must take all necessary steps to promote, protect and fulfill these rights. State compliance with the treaty is monitored by the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women. States must submit periodic reports on implementation measures.

The protection afforded to women under CEDAW was bolstered in December 2000 when an Optional Protocol (a supplementary treaty to the Convention) entered into force. The Optional Protocol creates a complaint procedure by which individuals and groups may appeal to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women about alleged violations of the Convention. The Optional Protocol also establishes an inquiry procedure for the Committee to investigate grave or systematic human rights abuses against women.

This section of the WHRR database includes articles, documents and links about CEDAW and its Optional Protocol. Selected journal articles are posted in full text. Links to full text documents are included where available. Click on "articles", "documents" or "links" below for the annotated lists of CEDAW resources.
Quick links: CEDAW treaty; Optional Protocol

To locate resources pertaining to the implementation of CEDAW in Canada, enter "CEDAW and Canada" in the keyword field on the database search page.

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