One Million Signatures Campaign honored with the Global Women’s Rights Award from Feminist Majority Foundation
Tuesday 24 March 2009
Change for Equality: The One Million Signatures Campaign has been awarded the prestigious Global Women’s Rights Award from the Feminist Majority Foundation (FMF). The members of the Campaign are pleased and honored to be recognized once again by other women’s rights activists and feminists around the world for their work.
Each year the Feminist Majority Foundation honors distinguished individuals or groups active in promoting women’s rights internationally with the Global Women’s Rights Awards. This year (2009), the Iranian One Million Signatures Campaign is the recipient of this award, "in special recognition of their ground breaking work to demand an end to discriminatory laws against women in Iran."
The One Million Signatures Campaign launched by Iranian women’s rights activists on August 27, 2006, aims to collect one million signatures in support of a petition addressed to the Iranian Parliament asking for the revision of current laws which discriminate against women.
Some award recipients from previous years are: Shirin Ebadi of Iran, Dr. Sima Samar of Afghanistan, Yanar Mohammad of Iraq, and Rigoberta Menchu Tum of Guatemala. Last year’s recipients were Dr. Solomon Orero from Kenya, Ms. María Luisa Sánchez Fuentes from Mexico, and Dr. Nafis Sadik from Pakistan. The award, inspired by Eleanor Roosevelt’s human rights and peace work, signifies international solidarity and recognition and it does not include a monetary prize.
The Feminist Majortiy Foundation, founded by the prominent women’s rights activist Eleanor Smeal, is a women’s rights NGO in the United States. It is currently the largest feminist research and action organization working in the areas of gender equality, reproductive rights and health, and non-violence. Among the activities of the Feminist Majority Foundation are its advocacy for election of women to public office and campaigns for pro-women’s rights legislation. The legislations that this foundation has successfully helped pass include the Violence Against Women Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, and the Domestic Violence Offender Gun Ban. The Feminist Majority Foundation also continues to advocate for ratification of CEDAW* and the International Criminal Court.
The Feminist Majority Foundation was one of the five principal organizers of the historic march on April 25, 2004, called the "March for Women’s Lives". On this day more than a million men and women marched in Washington DC in support of reproductive rights and against some of George Bush’s anti-women policies.
This foundation is currently the publisher of Ms. Magazine, co-founded by renowned feminist activist Gloria Steinem. The magazine features articles on women’s rights in the United States and around the world, including articles on Iranian women.
Members of the Feminist Majority Foundation have stood in solidarity with Iranian women’s rights activists several times in the past. For example in 2007, when 33 women’s rights activists were arrested in front of Tehran Revolutionary Court in Iran, the Feminist Majority Foundation held a virtual march in their support, with many people adding their names to the on-line petition demanding the release of these activists.
*CEDAW is the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women.