Philippine Participation to CEDAW

Before CEDAW came into effect on September 3, 1981, the Philippines had signed it on July 15, 1980 and ratified it on August 5, 1981, the first ASEAN country to do so. The Philippines also ratified the Optional Protocol to the CEDAW on November 12, 2003.

In co-sponsorship with Russian delegate Tatiana Nikolaeva, Philippines’ Leticia Ramos-Shahani prepared the first draft of CEDAW adopted by the United Nations as a basic working paper.

In compliance with the obligations of States Parties, the Philippines, over the last 2 decades has submitted six State reports to the CEDAW Committee, with the most recent 5th and 6th combined reports examined at the 36th session in 2006.

Below are the links to the Philippine reports to the CEDAW Committee:

Greater government-NGO consultation was encouraged in the preparation of the State report, resulting in several discussions and a major consultation with members of civil society to validate the information and analyses of the final report before its submission.

Three NGO shadow reports were also submitted at the 2006 session – a coordinated effort by 47 NGOs, spearheaded by the Women’s Legal Bureau; an issue-focused report on reproductive health and rights by EnGendeRights and Reproductive Rights Group; and a report highlighting extra-judicial killings and political persecution submitted by GABRIELA Philippines, a national women’s coalition involving over 100 organizations.

Below are the links to the Philippine NGO shadow reports to the CEDAW Committee

  • Philippines shadow report to CEDAW – 5th, 6th report: 2006
  • Philippines second shadow report on reproductive health: 2006

The Philippines’ participation to CEDAW has contributed massively in the advancement and empowerment of the Filipino women. This include the enactment of Republic Act 9710, otherwise known as the Magna Carta of Women which is a comprehensive women’s human rights law that seeks to eliminate discrimination against women by recognizing, protecting, fulfilling and promoting the rights of Filipino women, especially those in the marginalized sectors.

The Magna Carta of Women was enacted on August 14, 2009 and took effect on September 15, 2009. Besides this landmark legislation, the Philippines have several other laws, measures and instruments that protect women from discrimination and violence including:

The Philippines’ participation and reporting to CEDAW is jointly coordinated by PCW, the DFA, and the Presidential Human Rights Committee Secretariat (PHRCS). PCW, DFA and PHRCS are also part of the National Mechanisms for Reporting and Follow-up (NMRF) on international human rights mechanisms such as the CEDAW. The NMRF is created under the Philippines-UN Joint Programme on Human Rights finalized in July 2021.