Writer: Meredith C.
Commission on the Status of Women I & II (CSW) is one of the many committees in TASMUN. Upon entering the committee room on the first day, the delegates were doing opening speeches, where the room was quiet, with only the delegate at the podium speaking. All the delegates had a placard in front of them that said which country they were representing, such as Iceland, Japan, Mozambique, and Ireland. The chairs, who are the ones who run the conference, sit at the front of the room, with delegates sitting in a U-shape around them. There is a board behind the chairs indicating which part of the conference they are in. The delegates make their opening speeches at the very beginning, introducing their country's stance on the topic, saying what they believe in, what solutions they have provided, or what they are trying to solve. For example, the Delegate of Canada argued about educational rights. “Education is neither Eastern nor Western; it is human,” they said. Also, the Delegate of Bulgaria said that men and women should have equal rights. The other delegates all listen to the delegate up front, writing notes or silently listening to the delegate. When the delegate is finished speaking, the chairs tell the length of their opening speech and ask the next delegate to come up. The chairs remind the delegates to add to their speech, such as adding the phrase “Mr. Secretary and Madam Chair.” As the conference continues, the delegates line up behind the podium, notes or computer in hand, as well as the placard. As soon as all delegates have finished their opening speeches, the chairs open a slideshow and start introducing to the delegates how the Vienna Formula works. The Vienna Formula is the process in which delegates, once forming a resolution, have the right to edit, cut, or change the resolution. The resolution is formed by delegates in groups called blocs. As soon as the chair finishes speaking, the delegates ask questions and start discussing. They talk about what they agree on and add to any ideas that they have.
In the beginning, before the debate, the blocs chose a representative to help them to present their resolution. The chairs explained the steps leading up to the debate, such as Amendment Dumping, which is when delegates change the wording and format of the resolution. The chairs also told the delegates that the sponsor must pass the resolution. In the CSW Committee, there are 2 issues, and two resolutions need to be formed. One issue is on women’s clothing restrictions, and the other is on combating legal restrictions and obstacles to women's education. When the resolution is finished, the chairs read out the operative clauses and wait for the delegates to comment to strike, add, and clarify the sub-clauses and resolutions. After going through the entire resolution, the delegates move on to line reading. Line reading is when the delegate explains why they made the change. For example, the delegate of Canada made the changes because it would make the clause more concise and have more emphasis. Delegates then had to explain why they chose to edit the clause. After the delegates carefully explain why, the chairs wait for other delegates to comment, and then the original delegate keeps the changes if they agree with the comments others made. At the end of day one, the resolution was decided that no delegates object and have comments on the resolution as a whole. So, everyone agreed on the resolution. On day two, the ending resolution for issue 2 was also successful, and the resolution passed.
Overall, CSW II is very important because it makes sure that women should have equal rights and promotes gender equality. All delegates make suggestions to improve the resolution; if it’s too repetitive or needs more detail and emphasis, the delegates edit each others’ work. Hopefully, in the future, all women can have an equal life and have balanced rights as that men.
After the keynote speaker finished his speech, the delegates began to deliver their opening speeches. Many delegates mentioned in their opening speeches how the media often overlooked migrant abuse and how the topic should have received more attention. Later on, they splitted into groups of around four to five delegates and combined their ideas to draft a resolution. The chairs went around the room and helped the delegates who were confused or needed assistance. The chairs helped delegates generate ideas on how to work together and gave them useful tips. After lunch, the conversation continued, and the debate became lively. The delegates were more comfortable with each other and started to share ideas openly through conversations.
When the debate started, the delegates were slightly nervous and hesitant to speak. The room was quiet and had a tense atmosphere. All delegates behaved respectfully and carefully listened to each others’ speeches and points of informations. The delegates were discussing possible solutions on how governments could monitor refugees and how refugees can find shelter and food in their new homes, and more. There were disagreements in the debate along the way, but delegates resolved it peacefully with a consensus.
On day two, delegates worked on their amendments and resolutions, similar to yesterday. The room became quiet again as the delegate discontinued to work hard. After a while, debate convened. The delegate of Nigeria started the debate and agreed with the stance of the resolution. Delegates such as Germany, South Africa, and more had questions about the delegate of Nigeria’s clauses and asked through points of information in a respectful manner. The first amendment did not pass but the second one did with votes of 11 “for” and 9 “against". The debate over the two days was really well and delegates contributed to the common goal of developing resolutions to their topic.