Colombia commits to strengthen gender equality policies, eliminate gender disparities in education, reduce female unemployment, implement a plan on ending gender-based violence (updated)

Colombia commits to: strengthen the institutions and gender equality policies for the promotion, respect, protection and guarantee of the rights of all women with special attention to the most vulnerable, including the victims of conflict and women living in rural areas; to continue working to eliminate gender disparities in education and to guarantee equal access for women to all levels of schooling and training; to undertake all necessary efforts so that all boys and girls have access to quality early childhood care and development services and pre-school education; to continue to strengthen and promote the economic empowerment and autonomy of women and increase efforts to reduce the female unemployment rate from 11.9 per cent to 10.5 per cent; to continue working to transform work structures in companies, seeking to ensure that they not only generate employment and wealth for society at large but also serve as an equal work environment and contribute to creating a fairer society; to strengthen democratic representation and electoral participation and increase the full and effective participation of women and equal leadership opportunities at all levels of decision-making; to adopt additional measures to eliminate all forms of discrimination and violence against women and girls in private and public spheres. …

In 2015, the country approved a law against femicide. … Colombia pledges to create a national mechanism of coordination across sectors and institutions to create a global approach to gender violence, including prevention, care, protection, sanction and eradication; to establish and strengthen the necessary mechanisms and measures for the promotion, protection, full exercise and guarantee of sexual and reproductive rights; to strengthen women’s capacity to make decisions as to their bodies, sexuality and reproduction; to work towards the construction of new masculinities; and to strengthen the processes of planning, monitoring, assessing and creating proposals which are gender-sensitive. [ Commitment statement (in Spanish) ]

Developments since Colombia’s commitment

Colombia has progressed towards its goal of achieving a system of laws and public policies aimed at ensuring women’s rights and opportunities.  Since the adoption of the national roadmap towards gender equality in 2013, a national mechanism of coordination across sectors has been created to implement the roadmap.

Colombia has also launched a national policy to ensure the full exercise and guarantee of sexual and reproductive rights in the context of the provision of primary healthcare services. This policy represents an important step forward in the way sexual and reproductive rights are understood; and it also incorporates the perspectives of marginalized groups.

The government has also moved forward with the implementation of the 2008 law allowing tax reductions for the organizations that hire survivors of gender-based violence. [ Full update (in Spanish) ]