UN/ISDR to Explore Gender Aspect of Disaster Risk Reduction
17 April 2009: The International Conference on Gender and Disaster Risk Reduction, opening on 20 April 2009, in Beijing, China, will explore how women and men can participate equally in driving early warning systems, risk assessments, preparedness exercises and national and local plans to implement disaster risk reduction policies. According to the UN unit on risk reduction, men and women need to work together as equal partners to protect their communities against disasters, particularly as climate change increases the frequency and intensity of storms, floods and cyclones.
According to the announcement of the conference by the UN/International Strategy for Risk Reduction (UN/ISDR), women are more frequent victims of disasters. Margareta Wahlström, Assistant Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction, underlined the role women can play in disaster prevention and management. Conference participants are expected to reach consensus on a set of nine achievable actions that will be part of the “Beijing Declaration for Action” to be implemented by 2015. [UN press release] [UN/ISDR homepage]