March 11, 2011 New Online Database on Women's Legal Rights To Be Demonstrated on March 31

Press Contact: Audrey Fischer (202) 707-0022
Public Contact: Margaret McAleer (202) 707-7976

In 1980, 66 countries signed the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), which has since been ratified by 185 countries. To support the principles underlying CEDAW, in 2008 the American Bar Association (ABA) launched the International Models Project on Women’s Rights (IMPOWR). The goal of the initiative was to establish an online collaborative database on women’s rights under law.

Aileen Pisciotta, chair of the IMPOWR Task Force, will introduce and demonstrate the new website ( External) at 11 a.m. on Thursday, March 31, at the Law Library of Congress, located in Room LM-240 of the James Madison Building at 101 Independence Avenue, S.E., Washington, D.C. (Coffee and light refreshments will be served at 10:30 a.m.) The event is free and open to the public but seating is limited. Advance registration is required at [email protected].

The IMPOWR database provides a comparison of gender equality law reform and enforcement efforts on a country-by-country basis. The database covers 40 specific topics (e.g., crime and violence, marriage and family relations) for more than 185 countries. Taken as a whole, the site represents a global, searchable repository of information on gender law reform.

Administered by the Law Library of Congress, the Global Legal Information Network (GLIN) is a partner of IMPOWR. GLIN is a database of official texts of laws, regulations, judicial decisions and other complementary legal sources contributed by 37 governmental agencies and international organizations, covering more than 50 jurisdictions. The database, searchable in 14 languages, is accessible online at <> .

Founded in 1800, the Library of Congress is the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution. The Library seeks to spark imagination and creativity and to further human understanding and wisdom by providing access to knowledge through its magnificent collections, programs, and exhibitions. Many of the Library’s rich resources can be accessed through its website at and via interactive exhibitions on a personalized website at

Founded in 1832, the mission of the Law Library of Congress is to make its resources available to members of Congress, the Supreme Court, other branches of the U.S. government and the global legal community, and to sustain and preserve a universal collection of law for future generations. With more than 2.6 million volumes, the Law Library contains the world’s largest collection of law books and other resources from all countries and provides online databases and guides to legal information worldwide through its website at


PR 11-055
ISSN 0731-3527