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Involving men in achieving gender equality

Recommendation 1853 (2008)

Parliamentary Assembly
Text adopted by the Standing Committee, acting on behalf of the Assembly, on 28 November 2008 (see Doc. 11760, report of the Committee on Equal Opportunities for Women and Men, rapporteur: Mr Sigfússon).
1. The Parliamentary Assembly, drawing attention to its Resolution 1641 (2008) on involving men in achieving gender equality, considers that the involvement of men is a prerequisite for achieving equality between women and men. It therefore believes that public policies must not only incorporate a gender perspective and counter stereotypes, but must also include action that encourages men to participate.
2. The Assembly points out that the Council of Europe has a particular responsibility for involving men in gender equality projects, promoting balanced participation of women and men in public and political life and thus furthering gender equality in Europe. The Assembly welcomes the steps taken in this area by the Organisation, especially as part of the Council of Europe Campaign to combat violence against women, including domestic violence. It welcomes Committee of Ministers Recommendation Rec(2007)17 on gender equality standards and mechanisms, which acknowledges that “the full involvement of boys and men is decisive and instrumental to achieve [the aim of equality between women and men], which will have a positive impact on and bring added value to the lives of both girls and boys, women and men”.
3. The Assembly also notes that Committee of Ministers Recommendation Rec(2003)3 on balanced participation of women and men in political and public decision making provides that “the representation of either women or men in any decision-making body in political or public life should not fall below 40%”.
4. The Assembly invites the Committee of Ministers to:
4.1 ensure men’s involvement in its work and its action programmes, especially in sectors traditionally reserved for women (social affairs, education, gender equality), while ensuring that women have access to sectors traditionally reserved for men;
4.2 check that member states implement Recommendation Rec(2003)3 as far as the functioning of its own bodies and Council of Europe steering committees is concerned, with the aim of establishing a balance between women and men by 2010 in the expert groups and committees it sets up.