Lecture 2: Women’s human rights: is gender equality just too hard? 8th November 2016



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Countries such as the United Kingdom and New Zealand have signed up to secure equality between men and women through CEDAW- the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, often described as the International Bill of Rights of Women. Both countries have reported at least seven times to the UN CEDAW Committee. While many formal legal distinctions based on sex have been eliminated, do the human rights commitments made under CEDAW correspond to practice? Why is progress so slow in relation to hard issues such as violence against women, and systemic discrimination such as the gender pay gap? The presentation explores the role of the courts in remedying gender inequality. It also promotes the greater use of target-setting, benchmarking, women’s action plans and new evaluative strategies in the monitoring of CEDAW performance.

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