About the Gender Equality Program
Achieving gender equality is essential to strengthening democratic governance, human rights, and sustainable development. This fact is reflected in numerous international agreements, including Agenda 2030, in which gender equality is both a standalone Sustainable Development Goal (SDG5) and a recognized pre-requisite for achieving all other objectives.
The Americas and Caribbean region is viewed as a global leader in gender equality, with vibrant social movements, advances in women’s representation in national parliaments, and comprehensive legislative frameworks on issues like gender-based violence. However, systemic barriers and harmful social norms continue to disadvantage women and other marginalized groups in this region, as around the world.
Parliamentarians -- both women and men -- play a critical role in furthering progress on gender equality. Through their legislative functions and platforms, parliamentarians can contribute significantly by reforming discriminatory laws, strengthening social protections, advocating for gender-sensitive budgeting and oversight mechanisms, and ensuring that gender equality work is well-resourced and informed by women’s needs and perspectives. Parliaments themselves must also be responsive to gender in their internal operations and cultures to create enabling environments for change.
ParlAmericas supports parliamentary efforts to advance gender-sensitive legislative action. As a part of our gender equality program we create inclusive working spaces that foster peer-driven exchange of best practices, and provide specialized resources and support to strengthen these efforts. In close collaboration with civil society partners, our gender equality program also promotes women’s political leadership, including that of the next generation of empowered women leaders. Our work is informed by intersectional analysis, recognizing systems of discrimination and privilege that overlap with gender relations.
The Inter-American Task Force on Women’s Empowerment and Leadership was announced at the 8th Summit of the Americas (Peru, April 2018). With the objective of contributing to regional progress towards SDG 5 (gender equality), the Task Force serves as a coordination mechanism that reinforces commitments and strategies to advance women’s empowerment and leadership. The Task Force is composed of key inter-American and international institutions working across sectors and at multiple levels.