On 25 September at the United Nations, the world’s leaders adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a roadmap whose “goals and targets will stimulate action over the next 15 years in areas of critical importance for humanity and the planet.”

Covering 17 goals and 169 targets, “Agenda 2030” addresses many issues ranging from poverty to HIV/AIDS to climate change. And, for the first time, the gender equality goal includes targets aimed at ending violence and discrimination against women and girls, including a specific target on eliminating female genital mutilation (FGM) and child, early and forced marriage (CEFM), both of which have an irreversible and lifelong impact.

UN expert group is currently developing indicators to measure progress toward achieving the agreed upon goals and targets. Recognizing that eliminating female genital mutilation and the marriage of children around the world are crucial, the group’s proposal includes indicators measuringboth CEFM and FGM. Therefore, Equality Now and our partners are seriously concerned at a push by UN member states to minimize the number of indicators, the possible elimination of the FGM indicator altogether, and its current restriction to measure FGM only in “relevant countries.”

Though often hidden, both human rights violations can be found in nearly every country in the world. The SDGs will guide global development and funding until 2030, so global indicators are critical. The expert group is meeting at the end of October to further develop the indicators which will be finalized by the end of 2015 and formally adopted in March 2016. 

Take Action - Let’s not leave any girl or woman behind! Join Equality Now and our partners Safe Hands for Girls,The Girl GenerationInter-African Committee on Traditional Practices, and Global Woman PEACE Foundation in calling for SDGs with global indicators measuring both FGM and CEFM everywhere women and girls are affected!

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