Promoting women’s empowerment through UNCCD
1 October 2016
How can the UNCCD Parties and other stakeholders build on their achievements on empowering women to make an even stronger impact? In the eve of the 15th session of the Committee for the Review of the Implementation of the Convention (CRIC15), the members of the civil society organizations exchanged on how they can help shape the future by engaging parties actively on the topic.
The informal consultations on gender and women’s land rights focused on (1) women’s land rights; (2) monitoring women’s empowerment/gender in the new strategy; (3) networking with women’s organizations; and (4) organization of the Ministerial Dialogue on Gender.
The participants shared the view that the land rights link with many other critical issues on women’s empowerment. But religions and culture still hinder real dialogues on women’s land rights. To tackle the issue, men need to be more integrated into the process, for example, by identifying/educating gatekeepers among them about the importance of women’s land rights, utilizing the traditional family structure to discuss women’s rights to land, etc. The existing legislations on the land need to be examined at a country level. There are a number of practical examples and successful stories shared during the interactive discussion.
Gender mainstreaming is integrated into the Convention text. As the Parties to the Convention is developing its strategic plan for 2019-2030, this is the critical moment to ensure that gender issues are dealt with in practical ways by governments, and that the Convention defines and outlines a designated area of work on gender for the next decade. The participants in the informal consultations felt that it is important that the UNCCD has a complete gender programme which provides a guideline and criteria, particularly indicators, on reporting gender. The participants also recommended that the UNCCD collect data from grassroots communities.
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