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UN Names Actress Hathaway as Global Goodwill Ambassador

FILE - Anne Hathaway accepts the award for best supporting actress for her role in "Les Miserables" at the 85th Academy Awards in Hollywood, California, Feb. 24, 2013.

The United Nations has named Oscar-winning actress Anne Hathaway as a global goodwill ambassador for the U.N. Women agency.

The agency calls her a longtime supporter of women's and girls' rights, and says she will work for "affordable child care services and shared parental leave at both government and corporate levels."

On Wednesday, U.N. Women chief Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka decried what she calls the "motherhood penalty," saying working women who become mothers suffer from lost pay and opportunities on the job.

She said it has been hard to view raising a child as being a truly equal responsibility for both parents.

Hathaway said she was honored and inspired by an opportunity to help advance equality for women.

"Significant progress has already been made, but it is time that we collectively intensify our efforts and ensure that true equality is finally realized," she said.

The 33-year-old Hathaway won a Best Supporting Actress Oscar in 2013 for the film version of Les Miserables.