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Gender Equality Division
Gender Equality Developments | September 2020
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Migrant women and the impact of COVID-19 on women’s rights and gender equality on the agenda of the 17th Gender Equality Commission
The 17th meeting of the Gender Equality Commission (GEC) took place via videoconference on 8-9 July 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on gender equality as well as the sexual and reproductive rights during COVID-19 were discussed. The issue of migrant women and particularly the Drafting Committee on migrant women (GEC-MIG) which has been tasked to prepare a Recommendation on migrant and refugee women in 2020-2021 were also at the top of the GEC agenda. In this context, an exchange took place with the Office of the Secretary General’s Special Representative for Migration and Refugees.
Right to equal pay: European Committee of Social Rights finds violations in 14 countries
The European Committee of Social Rights (ECSR) has found violations of the right to equal pay and the right to equal opportunities in the workplace in 14 out of 15 countries which apply the European Social Charter’s collective complaints procedureBelgiumBulgariaCroatiaCyprus, the Czech Republic, Finland, FranceGreeceIrelandItaly, the NetherlandsNorwayPortugal and Slovenia. Only the case of Sweden was found to be compliant with the Charter. “The gender pay gap is unacceptable in modern societies, yet it continues to be one of the main obstacles to achieving real equality. European governments must urgently step up efforts to ensure equal opportunities in the workplace. (…),” said Marija Pejčinović Burić, Secretary General of the Council of Europe.
Awareness raising tools on combating sexism available in 19 languages
The awareness raising tools produced in the framework of the Campaign Sexism: See it. Name it. Stop it are now available in 7 new languages: Bulgarian, Dutch, German, Hungarian, Norwegian, Portuguese and Romanian. These tools aim at raising awareness of the Council of Europe Recommendation on preventing and combating sexism adopted in 2019. The Recommendation itself is now available in 24 languages.
Council of Europe publishes new Report on gender equality and media
A new analytical Report looking at the current legal and policy situation regarding gender equality and media has been jointly released by the Council of Europe’s Gender Equality Commission and Steering Committee on Media and Information Society. The Report concludes that some progress took place at the level of national legislations and media regulations, since the adoption of Recommendation CM/Rec(2013)1 on gender equality and media. Nevertheless, media coverage of gender equality issues and of violence against women as well as gender inequalities in the profession, high levels of violence against women journalists and a weak representation of women in decision-making roles still need to be addressed.
Training workshops on gender equality in education in Armenian
As part of the educational reform in Armenia and in the framework of the Project “The Path towards Armenia's Ratification of the Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence against Women and Domestic Violence “, a three-day online training was organised to discuss the principles of gender equality and gender mainstreaming in education. The  education experts who participated have been provided guidance on how to adopt and apply gender-sensitive education and communication, including the Recommendation CM/Rec (2017)13 of the Committee of Ministers to member states on gender mainstreaming in education
The win-win of gender mainstreaming
The Gender Equality Division produced an article on gender mainstreaming for Apolitical, an online platform producing courses and articles for public servants on topics related to public policies. The article presents the Council of Europe’s approach to gender mainstreaming and aims at giving guidance to civil servants on gender mainstreaming, based on the Council of Europe experience in different areas and tools.
Round table on combating violence against women and domestic violence in Ukraine
A meeting on Multi-agency Co-operation and Data Collection was held on 8 July 2020. A roundtable focusing on Articles 7, 10 and 11 of the Istanbul Convention was organised and attended by 28 participants, including representatives from Ministries,  civil society, international organisations, international and national experts, as well as the Council of Europe (CoE) office in Kyiv and Gender Equality Division.
New project on the Istanbul Convention and gender equality in Azerbaijan
A new PGG II project entitled "Raising awareness of the Istanbul Convention and other gender equality standards in Azerbaijan" started on 1 July 2020. The project aims at: a) raising awareness on the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence (the Istanbul Convention) and on other gender equality standards in Azerbaijan, b) providing support to national authorities regarding the signature and ratification of the Istanbul Convention and the harmonisation of national legislation and policies with Council of Europe standards. This will be done through three main types of action: legislative and policy framework gap analysis; awareness-raising activities; and capacity-building of relevant stakeholders. The project partners are the State Committee for Family, Women and Children Affairs, the Ministry of Justice, the Academy of Justice, the Ombudsperson’s office and the Faculty of Law of the Baku State University.
Webinars on measuring women’s access to justice in Eastern Partnership countries
In the context of the EU and CoE joint programme, Partnership for Good Governance (PGG II): “Women’s access to justice”,  in the Eastern Partnership countries, on 29 and 30 June 2020, the Council of Europe organised two inter-ministerial webinars on measuring women’s access to justice, with a special focus on women victims of violence. The webinars provided 35 representatives of ministries with information about women’s access to justice, including European and national and international human rights standards on access to justice and gender equality, best practices and indicators. Participants also received the Guidance note: Framework for measuring access to justice including specific challenges facing women translated in all six languages of the Eastern partnership countries.
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