Cities for CEDAW

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The UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) is the only international human rights treaty to focus exclusively on the rights of women. Adopted by many countries in 1979, CEDAW has been ratified by 186 of 193 UN member states worldwide. The United States is one of the seven member states, and the only industrialized nation, that has failed to ratify CEDAW, joined by such countries as Iran, Somalia, and Sudan.

In 1998, San Francisco became the first city in the world to adopt an ordinance reflecting the principles of CEDAW. The purpose of the Cities for CEDAW campaign is to "make the global local" by harnessing the power of cities and promoting the adoption of CEDAW as a municipal ordinance in cities large and small in order to create a framework for improving the status of women and girls. Supported at the June 2014 US Conference of Mayors, Cities for CEDAW will mobilize multiple stake holders including elected officials, the media, business, youth, NGOs, faith communities, and women leaders.

This campaign focuses on the adoption of a CEDAW measure in your community that fulfills three requirements – a gender analysis of city operations (workforce, programs, budget), an oversight body, and funding to support the implementation of the principles of CEDAW. The goal is for 100 cities to adopt a CEDAW measure by December 2015.

Mayors and advocates, commit to Cities for CEDAW!


Click the pledge banner to sign on!Cities for CEDAW Banner


Join the Effort!

Elected Officials: Take steps to Implement CEDAW

Mayor Edwin M. Lee

“As the Mayor of the pioneering CEDAW City, I urge the participation by my mayoral colleagues in the campaign and look forward to hosting mayors from across the county in June 2015 for the U.S. Conference of Mayors."
– Mayor Edwin M. Lee

PDF iconCities for CEDAW Fact Sheet
This one page fact sheet provides an overview of the campaign.

PDF iconTop 10 Achievements of San Francisco CEDAW Ordinance
A list of the top 10 achievements that San Francisco completed because of its local CEDAW Ordinance.

San Francisco CEDAW Ordinance
In 1998 the San Francisco Board of Supervisors passed the local ordinance, and the Department on the Status of Women oversees the implementation of it.

FileLocal CEDAW Ordinance Template
Based on the San Francisco CEDAW Ordinance, this template will help cities draft their own local CEDAW measure.

Human Rights in Action: San Francisco's Local Implementation of CEDAW
This report documents the work of the Department since the 1998 adoption of the local CEDAW Women's Human Rights Ordinance, providing examples of best practices to aid other municipalities in adopting similar measures.

PDF iconDesigning & Implementing a Meaningful Gender Analysis - Goals, Strategies, & Recommendation (August 2014)

Advocates: Start the Movement in Your City!

Krishanti Dharmaraj at UN CSW 58

“In essence, this can be done by any one of us. CEDAW in San Francisco is not unique."
– Krishanti Dhamaraj, iAngel

PDF iconAdvocate: Sign On
Pledge your support for the Cities for CEDAW campaign!

PDF iconHow to Talk to Your Elected Officials
This guide will help the public advocate effectively for a local CEDAW measure within city government.

Making Rights Real: A Workbook on the Local Implementation of Human Rights (WILD Booklet)
Published by Women’s Institute for Leadership Development (WILD) for Human Rights in 2006, this booklet provides resources and tips to implement CEDAW in your local community.


San Francisco Delegation at the CSW 58

Contact Us

Email: dosw@sfgov.orgPhone: 415.252.2570

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