Women Enabled International advocates and educates for the human rights of all women and girls, with an emphasis on women and girls with disabilities, and works tirelessly to include women and girls with disabilities in international resolutions, policies and programs addressing women's human rights and development. The organization's logo is the woman symbol ♀ with the letters 'WE' inside of the circle.
Women Enabled International (WEI) received generous funding from an anonymous donor for a Survey Project to foster a greater understanding of human rights advocacy for the rights of women and girls with disabilities, by disabled women ourselves and within the women's rights and disability rights movements,. Through an online survey and interviews, WEI produces this comprehensive report of the field of advocates for the rights of women and girls with disabilities globally and nationally, released on March 8, 2016, International Women's Day.
Updated June 22, 2016 Originally posted April 23, 2016 As we all know, the news is filled with discussions regarding the Zika virus, microcephaly, access to abortion, and women's sexual and reproductive rights—sometimes from a medical perspective, sometimes from a community health perspective, sometimes from a women's rights perspective, and occasionally from a disability rights perspective. When confronted with such an emotional issue in a climate of medical uncertainty and insecurity, nuanced language is often not reflected in the dialogues. After reading many of these perspectives, Women Enabled International (WEI) sets out a more nuanced perspective to frame a discussion that reflects the inherent rights and dignity of all affected by the Zika virus based on an intersectional disability and women's human rights perspective. We begin with an overview of the key medical facts as we understand them based on current scientific evidence, recognizing that new information is emerging on a regular basis, to ensure that this conversation is grounded in a common understanding of existing evidence. We conclude with an overview of some of the core international legal obligations that underpin the perspectives we layout in this document.
Please see WEI's Talking Points below in English, Spanish and Portuguese. We hope these are helpful and that they contribute to the discussions. Please contact us with any questions at Info@WomenEnabled.org. We greatly appreciate Translators Without Borders for these translations into Spanish and Portuguese .
Sexual & Reproductive Health & Rights of Women with Disabilities
Women Deliver 4th Global Conference – Copenhagen, Denmark
Date: Thursday, May 19, 2016 Location: Conference Room B3-3 Time: 13:30-14:30
Women with Disabilities are the world’s largest minority. In the session, presenters will share strategies to link women with disabilities with Sustainable Development Goals implementation and build a transformative cross-sectoral advocacy platform to advance sexuality, disability rights, women’s rights and human rights.
Stephanie Ortoleva, President & Legal Director, Women Enabled International
Andrea Parra, Women Enabled International and Aquelarre Trans, Colombia
Nidhi Goyal, Programme Director, Point of View and Stand Up Comedian
Katrina Anderson, Senior Human Rights Counsel, Center for Reproductive Rights
Tanzila Khan, Founder, Creative Alley, Women Deliver Young Leader, Pakistan
Rupsa Mallik, Director, Programmes and Innovation, CREA
Women Enabled International's own President and Founder, Stephanie Ortoleva, was honored on May 2nd by Women’s eNews at their New York City Gala, as a leader for the 21st Century. During the event, Stephanie was recognized as a leader who "…has made it her mission to change the rules that constrict the lives of women and girls across the globe." Watch a short excerpt of Stephanie's acceptance speech from the gala here:
January 2016 Women Enabled International founder and president Stephanie Ortoleva was named one of Women's E-News 21 Leaders of 2016. Read more.
December 2015 WEI Comments on United States Department of Justice Guidance on Gender-Biased Policing: Who's Missing?Disabled Women Say: Although there is much to commend in the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) Guidance on gender-biased policing for women generally, once again, women with disabilities are missing and ignored! The sadly cursory treatment of the issues confronting women with disabilities in situations of domestic violence and other forms of gender-based violence and assault is very disheartening and devastating to the lives of the thousands of disabled women in the United States who may call on the police for assistance.
Read the report.
October 2015 New HRW report on access to education for children with disabilities. A new Human Rights Watch (HRW) report documents the challenges to accessing education for the approximately 540,000 children with disabilities in Russia. The report highlights key issues in specialized schools and the quality of education, as well as later challenges of securing meaningful professional skills necessary to secure employment. The report provides viable recommendations and proposes solutions to address these issues to make inclusive education accessible to children and adults with disabilities at all levels of the education system. http://www.hrw.org/news/2015/09/03/making-russias-back-school-more-inclusive
The Committee has adopted a note on the General Comment outlining its likely scope:
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Stephanie Ortoleva, Esq.,
President and Founder
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