As Hillary Clinton weighs whether to run for President in 2016, she’s made gender equality the centerpiece of her political agenda. So, it only made sense for the former Secretary of State to headline this year’s commemoration of International Women’s Day.
Clinton attended a panel at the United Nations headquarters in New York yesterday, where she told the audience that “women and girls and the cause of gender equality” must be the core of the UN’s agenda to promote development around the world.
“For all we have achieved together, this remains the great unfinished business of the 21st century,” she said. “No country in the world, including my own, has achieved full participation and women and girls still comprise the majority of the world’s unhealthy, unfed and unpaid.”
The former First Lady went on to echo her famous words from the 1995 U.N. women’s conference in Beijing. “When women succeed the world succeeds. When women and girls thrive, entire societies thrive,” she said. “Just as women’s rights are human rights, women’s progress is human progress.”
She went on to stress the need to end violence against women and child brides, safeguard reproductive health and rights, encourage equal pay for equal work, and provide primary and secondary education for all.
“If we get it right, we can put the world on the path to less poverty and more prosperity, less inequality and more opportunity,” Clinton explained, adding these rights “must be the starting point for work today.”
She added that now is our opportunity to “mark the gains we’ve made together, as well as acknowledge the gaps.”