Mainstreaming Gender Equality at The National LevelFeb 28, 2017
On Tuesday February 28, 2017, a ceremony was held in the Grand Serail to officially mark the establishment of the Office of the Minister of State for Women Affairs (OMSWA), announce its partnership with UNDP, and sign the related Project Document.
The project entitled “Technical Support to the Office of the Minister of State for Women Affairs” aims to provide technical support to the latter and the Lebanese government in addressing priorities pertaining to women affairs. In partnership with other UN agencies and building on all previous initiatives, especially the ones lead by the National Commission for Lebanese Women (NCLW), the project aims at addressing the technical loopholes faced by the Lebanese government, to establish a solid basis for the OMSWA, and have a vision with concrete steps and performance indicators to reach the ultimate objective of achieving gender parity, and mainstreaming the role of women in national processes. The partnership with the Lebanese government will be leading to the following two main outputs, under which the specific activities will be implemented and results achieved, where the first is a consolidated all-inclusive action plan for the OMSWA to mainstream gender equality at the national level, and the second is support to the OMSWA to coordinate and implement projects.
UNDP will support the OMSWA and the Lebanese Government through the subsequent phases of preparation, implementation and monitoring of the action plan and follow-up on specific project development and implementation, based on the inputs of technical experts.
"We will seek to amend the laws that are unfair to women, such as the labor law, and laws pertaining to social security, sanctions and nationality," said the Minister of State for Women Affairs Jean Oghassabian.
"Research has shown that gender equality is a stronger predictor of a state's peacefulness than its level of democracy or gross domestic product. Where women are more empowered, the state is less likely to experience conflict," said Mr. Philippe Lazzarini, UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator & UNDP Resident Representative.
"For having taken a decision to appoint a man to this ministry, it is about men sharing the responsibility of driving a change for women, for women's leadership, participation and reputation in society. Without the men and gentlemen, change will not happen politically, socially and at home. It is a shared responsibility," said Mrs. Sigrid Kaag UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon.
“It is no secret that the empowerment of women became one of the international standards used to measure the progress of nations, and today, after almost seventy years, we didn’t make much progress in this field. In short, the State Ministry for Women's Affairs’ task is to correct this defect”, said Prime Minister Saad Hariri.
Signing this Project Document is the first step towards including women more in the Lebanese society, thus leading for a better nation, with more equality and prosperity.