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Beijing Platform for Action. Chapter IV Paragraph 147(k)


Author(s): Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Publication (Outlet/Website): The Good Men Project

Publication Date (yyyy/mm/dd): 2019/03/17

Strategic objective E.5.

Provide protection, assistance and training to refugee women, other displaced women in need of international protection and internally displaced women

Actions to be taken

147. By Governments, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations and other institutions involved in providing protection, assistance and training to refugee women, other displaced women in need of international protection and internally displaced women, including the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and the World Food Programme, as appropriate:

k. Ensure that the human rights of refugee and displaced women are protected and that refugee and displaced women are made aware of these rights; ensure that the vital importance of family reunification is recognized;

Beijing Declaration (1995)

Some of my favourite people in the world are individuals who, whether religious or non-religious, fight for the rights and dignity of others now, not in some abstract sense, not in the creation of some obscure and typically useless theoretical framework, not in the provision of some new scientific insight, nor in some clever slogan shareable in the public domain; no, some of my favourite people are ordinary people who put their bodies, livelihoods, careers, sometimes lives, on the line for something, which, as Mencken in spite of his tremendous flaws noted, is unquestionably noble. All the nobler when based on some true or, at a minimum, real axiom to some extent. It is an ignoring of the plights of others – their pains, losses, and desired best lives lost forever – that constitutes a prime evil, as it deals with things capable of feeling, sensing, emoting, and thinking.

Human rights, I hope, will some day in the future for some generation reach a point of realization for the population who comprise a range of consciousnesses. Something capturing the heart of constructed entities – human rights – and generalized for better applicability, more generality than religious law and human rights. Something like a Kohlbergian 8th stage developing off the 6th and 7th stages of the theoretical foundations of an ethical vision and horizon.

As we have been dealing with human rights as the internationalist foundational ethic for seven or so decades, documents like the Beijing Declaration provide a vision into a possible future for human beings more just and equitable than the one seen now. In this vision, we can see the same focus as in the other recent articles on governments, INGOs, and NGOs, which is something between national, regional, and international, with the “regional, and international,” depending on the context for the particular application of them.

The human rights universality of application, in principle, is important because most people will not meet most people, but most people will meet many people; and, many people have most of the same issues. This commonality of issues in the species makes for the idea of the universality of such principles. In that, something must be common to all for universality to apply in some reasonable sense. In these contexts of a species view implied by the “human” title in “human rights,” and the consideration of everyone as more the same than different, this is the basis for human rights as a more universal ethic than not.

Fundamentally, I believe this kind of vision of the world is the basis for tenderness and love. Simply put, it expands this vision from intimate limited interpersonal circles into the widest range available within the general or common considerations of experiences. Certainly, this can be, and has been, expanded into areas beyond the species to ideas of animal rights. Nonetheless, the awareness of said rights can be an issue.

Since Descartes, there has been this notion of only human beings having a soul. In this consideration of only human beings having souls, untold suffering has been applied to human beings considered not part of the common human species to non-human animals too. All in all, it becomes a situation of pain and suffering thrust upon individuals within the societies and the animals slaughtered for the survival and pleasure-consumption of humans.

Education limits about the rights of others and oneself can be one reason for the misapplication or lack of applied work for the fundamental human rights of others. As we have seen with so many others, there is, certainly, a sense in which refugees and displaced persons are off in the distance, in some other place, and, somehow as if by magical thinking, not one of us, not even like you; some sort of ephemeral, mystical creature beyond the breach.

Human rights are violated every day. It does not mean that the universalism of the rights or the commonality of the people are in some manner breached. Human rights are still rights, ethical ideas – invented by people. People are still members of the human species. I would only merely hope to extend this consideration into the future to non-human animals and artificial consciousnesses or technically constructed consciousnesses rather than simply evolved human consciousnesses or non-human animal consciousnesses.

With evolution via natural selection, the general idea seems clear. Human beings appear natural, mathematical objects with non-human animals coming about through the same bottom-up, environmentally guided, and non-conscious selection process in both the geosphere and the biosphere. As this implies a technical construction of consciousness or “awareness,” as the astute Paul Cooijmans points out, the same words for the same idea, just “consciousness” sounds more pompous – arrogant. When saying, “Awareness,” it becomes more clear, less magical-seeming. It is about something capable of some recursive self-consideration, which, in modern information theory and communication theory, simply means an information processor feeding back into itself for further information processing about itself. No need for pomposity or neologisms – ta-da! Then the special forms creates a formulation for some basis consciousness.

If these can evolve, then these can be constructed – because evolution amounts to a mass plural-pathway technique of engineering and selection-construction set-up at the same time – brilliant! A+ nature, nothing profound there. The focus here in the Beijing Declaration is important because of the ensuring of some of the most vulnerable populations of women seen in refugee and displaced women having access to some of the most basic rights. In that, the compounding of being so far away while also having foreign populations not know about the rights of vulnerable women creates an extremely difficult situation for those refugee and displaced women.

This is a common theme within the discussions on the rights for displaced and refugee women. In that, the basic levels of knowledge of rights is the first-order issue. After this is covered, there can be some focus on the importance of family reunification. However, as with 1995, we still require extensive efforts on the front of education for refugee women. It can be done, but it has to be accomplished within the larger ethical frameworks of the Beijing Declaration and the concept of human rights, and the equality and dignity of the best off and the worst off.

–(Updated 2020-03-07, only use the updated listing, please) Not all nations, organizations, societies, or individuals accept the proposals of the United Nations; one can find similar statements in other documents, conventions, declarations and so on, with the subsequent statements of equality or women’s rights, and the important days and campaigns devoted to the rights of women and girls too:Documents

Strategic Aims

Celebratory Days

Guidelines and Campaigns

Women and Men Women’s Rights Campaigners


In-Sight Publishing by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Based on a work at


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