Gender equality is a human right and a priority in MERCOSUR development policy. In this framework, International Women’s Day, which is commemorated annually every March 8, is an opportunity to highlight the importance of the gender perspective in public policies to promote equality for women in all spheres of life. , the role of women in society and the end to gender-based violence.
Throughout the history of MERCOSUR, the regional bloc has approved a series of regulations and created institutions with a gender perspective. In this sense, the creation of the Specialized Women’s Meeting (REM) stands out in 1998, hierarchical in 2011 with the creation of the Meeting of Ministers and High Authorities of Women (RMAAM), assuming an important role within the institutional structure of the block. In 2000, by resolution of the Common Market Group, the incorporation of the gender perspective in MERCOSUR was established. Subsequently, specific regulations have been approved on topics such as: comprehensive treatment of gender-based violence, care for women in situations of international trafficking for the purposes of sexual exploitation, political participation of women, domestic work, rural women, women and work. rural wage earner, rural education and development of the social economy for the inclusion of women.
In 2005, the approval of the Constitutive Protocol of the MERCOSUR Parliament (PARLASUR) reiterates the repudiation of all forms of discrimination, especially those related to gender, and urges States to seek adequate representation in terms of gender, ethnic groups and regions according to the national realities.
Also in 2011, within the framework of the Meeting of High Authorities on Human Rights of MERCOSUR (RAADH), the Working Group on Gender and Human Rights of Women – currently the Permanent Commission on Gender and Human Rights of Women – was created with the aim to integrate the gender issue as a transversal issue in the work of all instances of this space. In this sense, we can mention the “Free, Equal and Happy” campaign and the pedagogical manual on the use of inclusive and non-sexist language, developed by the Institute of Public Policies on Human Rights of MERCOSUR (IPPDH) by mandate of the RAADH. , among other actions to promote gender equality.
Likewise, the Strategic Plan for Social Action (PEAS), approved in 2011 and with technical support from the Social Institute of MERCOSUR (ISM), to guide the process of prioritizing the social agenda within the bloc through axes and guidelines, incorporates the gender perspective in a transversal way, and in turn proposes specific guidelines on women’s human rights. In 2014, the Southern Common Market Council (CMC) approved the MERCOSUR Gender Equality Policy Guidelines. In this framework, it becomes necessary to put into practice the Gender Equality Policy Guidelines, which are recognized as essential for the design, development, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of policies, regulations, strategies, programs, action plans, as well as resource management and budgeting.
The incorporation of the gender perspective in MERCOSUR is a continuous process that continues to advance in the bloc. More information in “Achievement 28: Incorporation of the gender perspective in MERCOSUR”.