Gender Equality and Respect
"No one shall be denied rights, status or access to an equal place in the life, worship, and governance of this Church because of race, color, ethnic origin, national origin, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, disabilities or age, except as otherwise specified by Canons." - Canons of The Episcopal Church, I.17.5
Kim Polhemus of St. John's, New Milford helped to create the Women's Global Mission Network, which helps people in parishes to identify and promote projects that serve and empower women and girls. Contact her about establishing a group at your parish, firstname.lastname@example.org. Kim has also developed a "Five-step process" for identifying and completing a project with your congregation. Link here.
The Episcopal Church has numerous educational resources around Gender Equality here.
The Anglican Communion is committed to addressing gender violence and discrimination.Search through their document library, also.
16 Days of Activism Campaign
As part of this each year, churches and provinces participate in the 16 days of Activism campaign that begins on November 25 to challenges gender based violence. Search for "16 Days" at the Anglican Communion website. Link here to a document, Anglican Men Speak Out, from 2014's campaign. It includes a video.
November 25 is the International Day Against Violence Against Women and December 10 is the International Human Rights Day. "This 16-day period also highlights other significant dates including November 29, International Women Human Rights Defenders Day, December 1, World AIDS Day, and December 6, which marks the Anniversary of the Montreal Massacre. The 16 Days Campaign has been used as an organizing strategy by individuals and groups around the world to call for the elimination of all forms of violence against women by:
- raising awareness about gender-based violence as a human rights issue at the local, national, regional and international levels
- strengthening local work around violence against women
- establishing a clear link between local and international work to end violence against women
- providing a forum in which organizers can develop and share new and effective strategies
- demonstrating the solidarity of women around the world organizing against violence against women
- creating tools to pressure governments to implement promises made to eliminate violence against women"
"The campaign uses a human rights-based approach to fight violence against women. ... As a strategy, the human rights framework can be described in seven principles:
- Dignity: The core basis of human rights is the protection and promotion of human dignity.
- Universality: The universal nature of human rights does not mean that they are experienced in the same manner for all people. Universality means that governments and communities should uphold certain moral and ethical values that cut across all regions of the world.
- Equality and non-discrimination: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and other international human rights documents afford the same rights and responsibilities equally to all women and men, all girls and boys, by virtue of their humanity regardless of any role or relationship they may have. When violations against women are not recognized as human rights abuses, women are collectively diminished as human beings and denied their inherent personhood.
- Indivisibility: Women’s rights should be addressed as an indivisible body, including political, social, economic, cultural and collective rights. These cannot be “prioritized” or divided into “generations” of rights, some of which should be achieved before others.
- Interconnectedness: Human rights concerns appear in all spheres of life – home, school, workplace, elections, court, etc. Violations of human rights are interconnected; loss of human rights in one area may mean loss in another. At the same time, promotion of human rights in one area supports other human rights.
- Government responsibility: Human rights are not gifts bestowed at the pleasure of governments. Nor should governments withhold them or apply them to some people, but not to others. When they do so, they must be held accountable
- Private responsibility: Governments are not the only perpetrators of human rights violations against women. Corporations and private individuals should also be held accountable; cultural mores and social traditions that subordinate women should be challenged."
International Day of the Girl
Based on a United Nations declaration of October 11 at the International Day of the Girl, dayofthegirl.org is an organization that at least one ECCT parish (St. James', Glastonbury) has partnered with to advocate for girls. They state, "We want ourselves, and girsl everywhere, to be seen as equals, i the eyes of others and in our own eyes." Link to their website for more info and resources to plan and hold a rally.