1946 - Birth of the Commission on the Status of Women

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    During the inaugural meetings of the UN General Assembly in February 1946, a Sub-commission dedicated to the Status of Women was established under the Commission on Human Rights. In May 1946, the first Chairperson of the Sub-Commission, Bodil Begtrup (Denmark - pictured above far right), requested a change to full commission status: “Women’s problems have now for the first time in history to be studied internationally as such and to be given the social importance they ought to have. And it would be, in the opinion of this Sub-Commission of experts in this field, a tragedy to spoil this unique opportunity by confusing the wish and the facts. Some situations can be changed by laws, education, and public opinion, and the time seems to have come for happy changes in conditions of women all over the world (...)”

    In this picture (original caption):
    At Hunter College, the Sub-commission on the Status of Women meets. From left to right are: Mrs. Hansa Mehta, India; Mrs. Way Sung New, China; Miss Fryderyka Kalinowski, Poland; Miss Angela Jurdak, Lebanon; Miss Minerva Bernardino, Dominican Republic; Mrs. Marie Helene Lefaucheux, France; and Mrs. Bodgil Begtrup, Denmark and Chairman of the committee.

    Photo Date: May 8th, 1946

    Photo Credit: UN Photo

    Photo Number (NICA): 224294

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