Statement by the Secretary General Thomas E. Garrett on International Women’s Day


In 2024, the UN theme of International Women’s Day is “Invest in Women: Accelerate Progress” and highlights the critical need to end poverty, implement gender-responsive financing, and support feminist change-makers.

At the Community of Democracies, we promote women’s meaningful engagement in public life as imperative to build strong, resilient democracies and just, inclusive societies. We do this through the work of the CoD Working Group on Women and Democracy, which contributed to the development of the CoD Action Plan on Gender Responsive Budgeting, and the CoD Working Group on Democracy and Technology, which spoke to the importance of joint efforts to empower women in the field of technology.

This year, a record number of elections will be held worldwide. This provides an excellent opportunity to again highlight the critical need to advance women’s participation in politics—as voters, candidates, and leaders. Women’s marginalization in political life especially concerns young women, who are potent change-makers and inspiring leaders in many areas but are too often excluded from formal politics.

To accelerate progress on gender equality, more joint efforts are needed to close the gender gap in all spheres of public life, including politics and the economy. As emphasized in the UN theme of the 2024 International Women’s Day, investing in women is a human rights issue.