International Women's Day

International Women's Day

On Thursday 8 March 2012, the heads of the Vienna-Based Organizations and staff members gathered to celebrate of International Women’s Day. The Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) was represented by the Executive Secretary Tibor Tóth and Vorian Maryssael, the newly appointed Director of the International Monitoring System Division.

Be part of the discussions at work and don’t give up your seat
or voice for anybody else. Make yourself heard. You are
important and you make a difference.Vorian Maryssael, Director CTBTO International Monitoring System Division

Vorian Maryssael, herself a mother of twin toddlers, talked (PDF) about the importance of sharing the responsibilities of parenthood to give both parties equal career opportunities: “We should review the role of the father and see that he can do an equally good job as the mother and mean as much as she does to the children. We should give both parents the right to their children, which in turn will give both parents the equal right to actively contribute to building a sustainable future for their children.” Maryssael emphasized the responsibility of employers for setting the framework conditions for equal parenthood and thus equal opportunities in the work place, for example through expanding paternity leave and flexible working hours.

For you women who want to contribute on the world arena,
make sure your partner is truly a partner and if you choose
to have children, a partner who is equally interested in being
a father as you are in being a mother.Vorian Maryssael, Director CTBTO International Monitoring System Division

In his statement (PDF), Tibor Tóth explained how the CTBTO has expanded its training and educational activities, for example through the Capacity Development Initiative (CDI), by “embarking on an unprecedented, mass educational collaboration”. “Our quest is to expand the current and next generation of CTBT experts.  I’m not just talking about scientists. But of expanding the pool of experts on the political, legal and technical aspects of the Treaty,” Tóth said. The CDI is a free Vienna based training programme, that is also available online, in real time.

My pledge is to train as many women in 2012 as we have
staff in the whole organization. So that means training
some 300 women on all aspects of the CTBTO’s work.CTBTO Executive Secretary Tibor Toth

The Executive Secretary said ongoing efforts were needed to close the gender gap within the CTBTO’s own house. “Forty percent of CTBTO Directors are now women. But we fall short across the board with women holding only 30% of professional posts. And only 25% of senior management positions (P5 and D1 combined)”. The CTBTO aspires to achieve a rate of 50% female representation across all staff levels.