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As the world learns to live with COVID-19, to emerge from the current crisis, and to “build back better”, UN Women will launch Plan for Equal, a visionary but practical roadmap for putting gender equality, social justice, and sustainability at the centre of the recovery. It will feed into UN Women’s Generation Equality Forum and Action Coalitions, aimed at accelerating commitment, action, and financing for gender equality.
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Across every sphere, from health to the economy, security to social protection, the impacts of COVID-19 are exacerbated for women and girls simply by virtue of their sex. This policy brief by the UN Secretary-General explores how women and girls’ lives are changing in the face of COVID-19, and outlines suggested priority measures to accompany both the immediate response and longer-term recovery efforts.
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In this report, the UN Secretary-General assesses the status of women in the United Nations system for the period from 1 January 2016 to 31 December 2017. Since the previous report, the representation of women in the Professional and higher categories in the United Nations system has increased from 42.8 per cent to 44.2 per cent. The largest increases were registered at the highest levels (Under-Secretary-General and Assistant Secretary-General), which is a direct result of the efforts of the Secretary-General in line with his commitment to reach parity at the highest levels by 2021.
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The “Enabling environment guidelines for the United Nations system” will support efforts to create a working environment that embraces equality, eradicates bias, and is inclusive of all staff. These guidelines include good practices and recommendations on workplace flexibility, family-friendly policies, and standards of conduct, as well as on recruitment and talent management.
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The analytical report and policy brief are based on an analysis of East and Southern African country reports and other relevant documents and offers a snapshot of regional trends in terms of the achievements and challenges in the 12 critical areas of concern of the Beijing Platform for Action (BDPfA), besides making some critical recommendations for future action.