Commission on the Status of Women

May 25, 2017

Meet your Chair

Chair: Catherine Said

Dear Delegates,

It is my absolute pleasure to welcome you to the Commission on the Status of Women at ILMUNC Peru! My name is Catherine Said and I am so excited to be acting as your chair for this conference. The secretariat and staff have been hard at work to make ILMUNC Peru a meaningful experience for you and I hope that your weekend in committee will be full of debate and memorable moments.

First, just a little bit about myself. I am a senior in the College of Arts and Science majoring in International Relations and Economics with a minor in International Development. I was born in Australia and, after my childhood there, moved to China and then the United Arab Emirates. During my high school years, I also did Model UN and the conferences I attended have made for some of the best memories I have – I hope that ILMUNC Peru will do the same for you. Within the International Affairs Association at Penn, I work with the Community Outreach and Engagement branch to implement international affairs curriculums into high school classrooms across the city. Outside of that, I work as a student consultant in improving literacy projects for non-profits abroad and volunteer in West Philadelphia elementary schools. I am also a semi-constant member of my intramural basketball team, an avid lover of all things travel and cooking, and am on a constant mission to drag someone to a new restaurant or try a new recipe.

I am thrilled to be chairing one of my last MUN committees on the status of women and, specifically, on the topics of leadership and political participation and the rights of female migrant workers. Female empowerment is one of my core academic interests and I’ve worked on developing female leadership amongst recent graduates in rural Ghana and with female migrant workers in Dubai – the ability of women to shape society and create impact is a notion I believe in to no end. As record-high numbers of women enter the workforce, run for public office, and make progress on the issues of economics, leadership, and health, it is adamant that we work to address the disparities that exist within the context defined by gender and how we can most effectively minimize, and eliminate, them. In the words of a Chinese saying, “women hold up half the sky” – this should remind us of the paramount importance of our committee.

While the background guide will serve as a good introduction to the topics we will cover, I hope it will also serve as a starting point as you conduct further research. I am confident that you will bring creative ideas to committee and cannot wait to hear them through collaborative discussion and debate. Leading up to conference, please feel free to reach out with any questions or concerns. I look forward to meeting all of you in November!


Catherine Said
Chair, Commission on the Status of Women



Committee Topics

Topic A: Leadership and Political Participation

Every day, all over the world, women in communities large and small fight to be heard in a system built for men. The promotion of women's rights worldwide is of the utmost importance, and in today's increasingly globalized and interconnected world, it is an attainable goal. By fostering a dialogue between women of all backgrounds, our international community has a chance to progress the rights of women on terms agreeable to all. This committee will emphasize the need for long-term solutions where women occupy the leadership positions that enact norm-changing policies and assert political influence. It will seek to give voice to silenced women through voting and advocacy rights. By considering the philosophical, cultural, and historical problems inhibiting action, delegates will focus on developing solutions to bridge the gap in leadership and political influence so that men and women alike can collaborate to create a world that appreciates the rights and worth of all its inhabitants.

Topic B: Rights of Female Migrant Workers

The United Nations defines a migrant worker as any individual working outside his or her home country. Economic conditions in the developing world have created a wave of migrant workers, many of whom are female. While migrant work provides women from developing countries many opportunities such as an escape from oppressive regimes and newfound economic mobility, migrant work brings many challenges for women. The rights of many female migrant workers are threatened, most notably the being the disregard for minimum wage rates and the trend of domestic violence in families with a female migrant worker. This committee will discuss the nature of women's migrant work – it's benefits and challenges and its discrepancies with male migrant work – and work to formulate a comprehensive solution to the issues presented.