Female Parliamentarians from all around the world will meet in Rwanda for the WIP Summer Summit 2014 (1-4 July). During this unique gathering of female leaders, the MPs will study Rwanda’s success in female political empowerment, while addressing the need for more women in decision-making positions in politics and in reconciliation processes.
UN Women will present its Constitutional Database during the Plenary Session at the Parliament of Rwanda “The impact of Constitutions and Legislation to establish gender equality and enable women empowerment”.
Empowering women, be it in politics, the economy and society, requires a broad set of tools, especially to act on the cultural foundations that lead to gender discrimination or marginalization. The tool of the highest legal order is to enshrine gender equality and women empowerment directly in the constitution of a country. This is an important step towards ensuring that states eliminate gender-based discrimination and advance women’s rights. As diverse as the people they govern, constitutions set out principles and rules for inalienable rights and duties. If and how these texts include gender has an impact on women. Many countries have enshrined gender equality and specific women’s rights and women empowerment in their constitutions.
The UN Women Constitutional Database provides an important overview of the inclusion of women’s rights in constitutions in different countries. Which countries have enshrined women’s rights in the constitution? Has this been effective in promoting women empowerment? Are there concrete examples in legislation or societal change how this has helped to improve the situation of women? Which lessons can be learnt?
These and many more issues will be discussed during the WIP Summer Summit in Rwanda.