GIVE A RED CARD

TO DISCRIMINATION AND VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AND GIRLS

EQUAL LIGHT APPEAL AND PLEDGE

INITIATED BY THE AFRICAN RENAISSANCE AND DIASPORA NETWORK

The FIFA Women's World Cup 2019, hosted by France, will highlight women's outstanding achievements in sports. Yet while we, as members of participating teams, are given the opportunity of demonstrating our skills, around the globe, billions of women and girls still experience numerous forms of discrimination too often disregarded. They are deprived of basic rights proclaimed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, denied opportunities, and suffer physical and emotional abuse. It prevents them from living truly fulfilling lives and also hampers social, economic and health progress for all.

A red card in soccer spotlights and helps prevent unfair or dangerous behaviour. We, therefore, give the RED CARD to discrimination against women and girls in all forms and in all countries.

We commend all governments for committing on 25 September 2015 at the United Nations to achieve - by 2030 at the latest - 17 "Sustainable Development Goals" in order to end poverty and hunger; reduce inequality; build peaceful, just and inclusive societies; protect the planet and its natural resources; and generate decent work for all.

We appeal to women and men around the globe to help reach Goal number 5 for achieving gender equality everywhere and empowering all women and girls.

We urge individuals, associations, enterprises, local and regional authorities, governments and intergovernmental bodies - to make this an absolute priority. It is long overdue, and it is a prerequisite for reaching other Sustainable Development Goals.

We pledge to fully respect every other human being, regardless of gender, culture, color, language, social origin, birth, property or religion, hence to put an end to all forms of discrimination and violence against women and girls.

This will enable everyone to stand together in an Equal Light of progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals