Women, Peace & Security

In the News: Wednesday, 9 September 2020

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Coronavirus – South Sudan: International Organization for Migration (IOM) and RedR UK Report closing the gap in Women’s Rights and Opportunities in Humanitarian Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Response in South Sudan

Source: Africa News

 Significant barriers including entrenched gendered divisions in labour, high risks of gender-based violence and working environments not considerate of women’s needs or valuing their contributions, are hampering women’s participation in water, sanitation and hygiene services as well as the wider humanitarian sector in South Sudan, research conducted by IOM and RedR UK has revealed.

The research, “Closing Gender Gap in the Humanitarian WASH Sector in South Sudan”, is the first ever systematic and cluster-wide study in the country on this issue. It has identified barriers that women face at three-levels – structural, institutional and individual – and the harmful gender norms that underpin these barriers and limit opportunities in the sector for women.

Read more here.

Women take a lead to fight GBV during COVID-19 in Tanzania

Source: UN Women

A community-based network of women in Mufindi, has teamed-up with UN Women in Tanzania, Unilever Tea Tanzania and the Local Government Authority in a campaign that is fighting to end violence against women and girls in the district. This campaign is also ensuring that women actively participate in COVID-19 prevention and recovery efforts in Mufindi, a rural district situated in the highlands of Iringa region, best known for its high-quality organic tea plantations and good timber for export.

Read more here.

Expert’s take: The gendered impact of COVID-19 requires transformative changes in economic policies

Source: UN Women

 The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed and exacerbated gender inequalities and biases, and deepened pre-existing inequalities in the labour market. Women have traditionally received lower incomes and held less secure jobs than men; they are also more likely to be employed in the informal sector or in service jobs – roles that offer less access to social protection, insurance, sick pay and paid parental leave and sectors heavily impacted by the pandemic. In addition, women are responsible for a disproportionate amount of unpaid domestic and care work. The impact COVID-19 has had on women’s economic security has been severe and will have long-term effects, causing dips in women’s income and labour force participation while also contributing to a deeper contraction in global GDP.

To contain and reverse the pandemic’s socioeconomic burden on women, we need to start with a shared understanding of how the pandemic deepens existing inequalities and exposes vulnerabilities in the economy. A regional Rapid Gender Assessment (RGA) survey, conducted by the UN Women Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia (the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women) on the gendered impacts of COVID-19 reveals the troubling reality of how the pandemic is impacting women’s participation in the economic domain across Europe and Central Asia (ECA).

Read more here.

Myths About Legal Obstacles to Pursuing Individual Criminal Accountability for Sexual Exploitation and Abuse

Source: LSE WPS Blog

Serious sexual crimes are committed in Peace Operations. Virtually all States recognise these as crimes, yet there have been a very limited number of prosecutions. Ai Kihara-Hunt discusses here the legal obstacles often invoked in the cases and argues that these are in-fact myths and that if truly willing, there can be individual criminal accountability for the sexual exploitation and abuse committed by peace keeping personnel.

Read the blog post here.