United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

Poland and Romania

Gender equality and women’s empowerment, Education, Employment and decent Work for All, Health and Population Dynamics.

Thank you very much Mr. Co-chair, I will speak on behalf of Romania and Poland. Achieving gender equality is crucial for achieving sustainable development. In our opinion this should be a stand - alone goal and also we should integrate this issue in other goal as a cress-cutting issue (education, employment, energy, water and sanitation, health and population dynamics). In terms of priorities we would like to highlight the following action areas:
• Ending violence against women and girls regardless the age and ability (in particular migrant and refuge women, older women, indigenous, women with disabilities), ensuring for them access to justice, eliminating discriminatory social norms and attitudes (including child, early forced marriages).
• Women’s voice, decision making at all levels (including political processes and households) as well as participation in both the public and private spheres.
• Access to decent work, elimination of gender-based discrimination in employment, social protection, health care, quality care for children, full control of assets and incomes, elimination of social discrimination in acquisition of assets such as credits, natural resources or through inheritance.
• Access to quality education at all levels and life-long learning as well as safe and supportive learning environments.

Health and population dynamics
The main challenge is to achieve the highest attainable standard of mental and physical health and improving health life expectancy. There are inter-linkages between health and other focus areas such as food, water and sanitation, promoting equality and gender equality. In this area we need to: ensure universal health coverage, eliminating of preventable child and maternal deaths, reduce child morbidity, end HIV/AIDS epidemic, prevent and treat communicable and non-communicable diseases, tackle environmental causes of diseases.
(Now I would like to present a comment in this regard at the Polish national capacity). As regards the discussion on proposed targets on SRHR for the Action Areas Women’s empowerment and Health and Population Dynamics we would like to note the diversity of views among UN Member States concerning the notion of sexual and reproductive rights, in this regard we want to point out that the notion should be used in the context and in accordance with the Programme of Action of the international Conference on Population and Development and the Beijing Platform for Action.

We must ensure access to education up to lower secondary to all (girls and boys), regardless any circumstances, including access to completing technical and vocational education and literacy education. The areas important in this regard are following: equitable access to education at all levels also for the most marginalizes (indigenous peoples, ethnic minorities, persons with disability, providing universal early childhood education, universal adult literacy and lifelong learning opportunities for all). There also many interlinkages with other FAs, therefore education could be merged as targets inter alia in promoting equality and gender equality and poverty eradication.
Employment and decent work for all
This area is related and interlinked to other focus areas (promoting equality and gender equality, economic growth, industrialization) therefore we would like to consider it as a cross cutting issue. The most important action areas are: promoting full employment through economic policy, addressing youth unemployment (policies and strategies), participation and equal access of women in labor market, equality and economic opportunities for marginalized groups, elimination of labor discrimination against persons with disabilities and older persons, social security and protection including retired from labor force, persons with disabilities, the unemployed and those remaining on parental leave, children youth and older persons, promoting opportunities of employment in rural areas (eco-sustainable tourism), training and reskilling.