EQUALITY NOW presents The Dreams of a 12 Year Old Girl Equality Now works to end violence and discrimination against women and girls around the world. In 2004, Equality Now launched its Beijing +10 campaign to end discriminatory laws.
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The Dreams of a 12 Year Old Girl
Equality Now works to end violence and discrimination against women and girls around the world.
In 2004, Equality Now launched its Beijing +10 campaign to end discriminatory laws.
At age 12, a girl stands on the edge of adulthood. She has dreams about the life she wants to lead.
She hopes to make choices and wants to prepare for the challenges she will face,
the woman she will become.
In spite of the progress made since the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995, many laws around the world overtly discriminate against her because she was born female.
Many laws around the world jeopardize her future.
I am your daughter, your sister, your friend, your neighbor. I am 12 years old.
I want to be an equal citizen.
Did you know that the citizenship law in my country treats me differently from my brothers?
I want to vote.My mother still cannot.
Why is my mother not allowed to vote in my country although my father can?
I want to work in a place of my choosing.
Do you know that in my country the law allows a husband to object to his wife’s profession?
My father can prevent my mother from working if he thinks it against the interest of their marriage or children.
If I get married, I want my husband to be an equal partner.
I see my mother and aunts who cannot leave the house without their husbands’ permission.
I don’t want that to happen to me.
I want to inherit and own property, whether or not I am married.
Why should I forgo my right to inheritance and family property if I decide to get married?
In my country, I would have to.
I want the right to divorce and remarry.
My father beats my mother.Why does she need his permission to divorce him in my country?
I want to live free from violence and discrimination.
Is it too much to ask that I be protected from rape? Even within my marriage.
I want to be free from female genital mutilation.
Who are my laws protecting?
The Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action say that I am equal to my brothers.
How can I be treated equally with my brothers if my country’s laws discriminate against me?
But I am hopeful.
Since the Beijing Conference in 1995 positive changes have begun:
Turkey has repealed a law that made a husband the head of the marital union.
Mexico has reformed its law that allowed girls to be married at 14 and boys at 16. The marriage age is now 18 for all.
Morocco has adopted a new Family Code that eliminates discriminatory laws.
I want my government to protect my rights and give me a voice when I become a woman.
Governments incur no costs in ending discriminatory laws – it is free.
All we need is political will.
Act now.You can make a difference in my life.End discriminatory laws now!
Get involved.Join me in creating a world of opportunity for girls.Support Equality Now’s campaign to end discriminatory laws worldwide Log on to www.equalitynow.org