Tag Archive for: Gender and participation

From Fundeps, together with the participation of some international civil society organizations, we sent the IDB a document with comments and observations on the Environmental and Social Policy Framework from a gender perspective.

“Below, we offer a google translate version of the original article in Spanish. This translation may not be accurate but serves as a general presentation of the article. For more accurate information, please switch to the Spanish version of the website. In addition, feel free to directly contact in English the person mentioned at the bottom of this article with regards to this topic”.

In December 2019, the Inter-American Development Bank -IDB- published the draft of the Environmental and Social Policy Framework (MPAS) in order to modernize its environmental and social policies. What does this MPAS mean? These are the requirements in environmental and social policy that the Bank or the Bank’s borrowers must meet when carrying out a project. In this statement, the Bank maintains a commitment to environmental and social sustainability, translated into a series of requirements and recommendations ordered in ten Performance Standards to be met in each project.

In January 2020, on-site and virtual public consultations began, in which Fundeps participated by presenting a review of what was proposed in social and environmental safeguards policies. This month, we led a document with specific comments and observations to Rule 9, on Gender Equality, and its lack of mainstreaming towards the rest of the MPAS Rules. This document was formulated together with another group of NGOs that adhered to the recommendations and together it was presented to the IDB. This work involved analyzing the entire draft of the Framework from a gender perspective and also contrasting it with previous gender policies published by the Bank.

As mentioned, the first shortcoming identified is the loss of mainstreaming of gender policy in project financing requirements. Taking into account that such projects directly and indirectly affect local communities, we demand that the Gender Equality Standard dialogue with other approaches such as race, ethnicity, class, age, religion, profession / activities, geographic location, among others. In other words, we demand that the problems be addressed from an intersectional vision, recognizing the coexistence of different vulnerabilities.

Regarding its conceptualization of gender equality, some inequalities of women with respect to men are mentioned, along with possible violence against trans people, so its approach in relation to LGBTTTIQ + people is scarce and superficial. Although it refers to ‘gender empowerment’ instead of ‘women empowerment’, there is no specific mention of gender, which manifests the reproduction of a binary, exclusive and regressive approach in terms of human rights. Furthermore, this means -not specifically mentioning the genres- the lack of incorporation of LGBTTTIQ people in the requirements to be met by the projects.

In its implementation measures, we note that the approaches proposed by the international human rights treaties for girls, adolescents, women, and LGBTTTIQ + people are not incorporated. On the other hand, the implementation measures required of borrowers do not include a proactive policy to advance on gender equality, as it was included in previous Bank gender policies. We continue with a preventive policy, although we identified an absence of a gender perspective in the design of strategies to mitigate and prevent violence, discrimination and inequalities.

In order to materialize progress regarding human rights in IDB-financed projects, we raise the need to strengthen the Bank’s commitment to the gender perspective, such as incorporating it at the internal level of its organizational structure. Taking into account the Bank’s ability to generate public policies through its choice of financing, we conclude that it must develop robust frameworks, operational policies, and accountability mechanisms that incorporate the gender perspective cross-sectionally and ensure the informed participation of affected people at all stages of all projects financed and undertaken by the Bank.

This document makes comments and observations on the draft of the IDB’s new Environmental and Social Policy Framework from a gender perspective. The comments and suggestions have been made with the aim of strengthening the Bank’s commitment to the gender perspective and its internal incorporation into its organizational structure. It also seeks to avoid the continued violation and corrosion of the rights of women and LGBTTTQ + people.

During the month of March, we carried out two trainings for important social actors: health professionals and the public administration of the Province of Córdoba.

“Below, we offer a google translate version of the original article in Spanish. This translation may not be accurate but serves as a general presentation of the article. For more accurate information, please switch to the Spanish version of the website. In addition, feel free to directly contact in English the person mentioned at the bottom of this article with regards to this topic”.

Gender at work: the gaps we inhabit and don’t see

On Thursday, March 12, we trained the personnel of the Property Registry of Córdoba, on gender and work. It had the objective of identifying the gender inequalities that exist in the formal and informal labor market, and in the paid as well as in the unpaid, to begin to reflect on the possible ways to combat them.

In a room made up mostly of women, the presence of a few men was significant and valuable in the sense of being a clear proof of the cultural change that is taking place in our society.

With comments, data contributions and questions, the people who participated in the training showed their amazement at the gender inequalities that exist in the different work environments and their interest in thinking about new strategies and lines of action to advance in gender equality. in these spaces.

Conscientious objection: the Trojan horse in the Voluntary Termination of Pregnancy laws

On Friday, March 13, we carried out a training aimed at the Network of Health Professionals for the Right to Decide. The objective was to learn about the uses and abuses of conscientious objection in the health field, and fundamentally, in sexual, reproductive and non-reproductive health services.

Conscientious objection is a legal institute that allows exemption from a certain obligation when it contradicts a person’s moral, ethical or religious convictions. However, it is often used in an abusive way, and it becomes an obstacle when it comes to guaranteeing fundamental rights, such as access to termination of pregnancy in cases where it is legal.

In a scenario in which the discussion on the law of Voluntary Termination of Pregnancy is looming, it is important to know the fundamentals behind this type of institutions, and the experiences existing so far in its practice and regulation.

Training as a guarantee of human rights

We celebrate these instances of training aimed at State agents, accompanying and legitimizing the provisions of the Micaela Law.

We understand that the gender training of these actors is essential to guarantee the rights of all people, and translates achievements achieved after years of struggles by social movements, women and LGBTIQ + people.


Cecilia Bustos Moreschi, cecilia.bustos.moreschi@fundeps.org

We demand it in the marches, the partisan companions asked for, it has been promoted for decades with laws and projects and yet not. Again a priority male cabinet. Again a non-representative and non-diverse cabinet.

After speculation, meetings, arrangements and negotiations, finally Alberto Fernández, the president-elect, announced the formation of his cabinet. The Vice Presidency of the Nation, a charge of Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, joins the Office of the Chief of Staff, a charge of Santiago Cafiero, the General Secretariat of the Presidency headed by Julio Vitobello, Vilma Ibarra in the Technical and Legal Secretariat (the authorities of the Secretariats have the rank and hierarchy of Minister) Gustavo Beliz in the Secretariat of Strategic Affairs, Martín Guzmán in the Ministry of Economy, Martín Kulfas in the Ministry of Production, Felipe Solá in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Wado de Pedro in the Ministry of the Interior, Daniel Arroyo in the Ministry of Social Development, Eliana Gómez Alcorta in the Ministry of Women, Gender and Diversity, Marcela Losardo in the Ministry of Justice, Ginés González García to the Ministry of Health, María Eugenia Bielsa to the Ministry of Territorial Development and Habitat, Gabriel Katopodis to the Ministry of Public Works, Agustín Rossi to the Ministry of Defense, Sabina Frede ric to the Ministry of Security, Claudio Moroni to the Ministry of Labor, Mario Meoni to the Ministry of Transportation, Nicolás Trotta to the Ministry of Education, Tristán Bauer to the Ministry of Culture, Roberto Salvarezza to the Ministry of Science and Technology, Matías Lammens to the Ministry of Sports, Juan Cabandié to the Ministry of Environment and Luis Basterra to the Ministry of Agriculture.

To these Ministries, the state company AYSA and the AFIP and PAMI organizations, headed by Malena Galmarini, Mercedes Marcó del Pont and Luana Volnovich, respectively, are added. In addition, Cecilia Todesca as Deputy Chief of Staff, Adriana Puiggrós as Deputy Minister of Education and Victoria Tolosa Paz in the Social Policy Council.

The photo of the brand new Pink house: Suit, tie, suit, tie, beard, mustache, shirt, handshake. What does that photo tell us that returns so much homogeneity, classism and androcentrism?

D´Alessandro, Vales and Snitcofsky, in an article published in 2017, “Overview of the glass dome in the State” state that: androcentrism?”

“There are more ministers called Juan than female ministers in the history of Argentina. Since 1983, there were only 16 women in this position in different governments, with 154 male ministers who succeeded each other. Nor is there a long history, the first was the first was Susana Ruiz Cerutti in 1989 and lasted only 45 days. Today, women are 31% of the total workers in the positions that make up the organic structure and authorities of the national executive branch, however, there are only 3 women in the 23 front-line positions (ministries, cabinet and chancery); that is, just 13%. In this layer there are also more graduates of the Cardenal Newman school than ministers. ”

This image of the outgoing government ministerial portfolio is a photo that is repeated. Far from parity, once again the political dynamics, relegate women to a few positions.

After the ministerial reorganization, the Cambiemos government left only 2 of the 11 ministries run by women. The new government shows a slight improvement as it increases the number of women in these positions to 5, but still, it is very far from parity: in total, women occupy 21.7% of the 23 positions with ministerial hierarchy of first line (counting the Headquarters of Cabinet).

In the case of the Legislative Power, the permanent struggle of women and dissidents became legal tools. Not without enormous resistance, criticism and violence, in 1991 Argentina sanctioned a Women’s Quota law – law 24.012 – which states that “lists submitted to elections must have women in a minimum of 30% of candidates for office choose and in proportions with the possibility of being elected ”. Today, about 30 years after its implementation, we recognize that the measure was positive. Discussion topics were expanded, key laws were passed and new rights were acquired in matters of identity, family, health and education. In 2017, the Chamber of Deputies of the Nation approved and converted into law the so-called gender parity for the integration of lists of legislative candidates in the national jurisdiction. Thus, as of 2019, the lists should place men and women in an interleaved and consecutive manner, achieving a 50% distribution for each gender. But in the case of the Executive Power, there is no regulation that requires expansion or parity in the formation of cabinets. The participation of trans bodies and dissent in the public-political sphere and in the key decision spaces are still pending challenges.

“In addition to these obstacles, and others where stereotypes and machismo play an important role, there is an underlying prejudice and it is that women do not reach high-level positions because they do not have the necessary education, experience and / or capacity . If we assume that the best or most qualified are always in the government leadership then we should ask ourselves why women are only 10% of the ministers we have had since 1983 to here. Women (…) are more than 40% of workers, have an average year of education more than their peers and are 60% of university students and graduates ”(D´Alessandro, Vales and Snitcofsky, 2017).

According to the UN Women in Politics map, as of January 2019, women have only 20.7% of ministerial positions worldwide, being the highest figure in history. Argentina today, manages to overcome this figure with a government that announces itself progressive, has equity as a priority and addresses specific issues that are fought from feminisms and dissent.

We are more, but there is still much to conquer

Those who militate diversity, rescue what has been achieved and continue fighting for spaces, laws and actions that are still to be achieved. Regarding the presidential cabinet, first, we look at those who access positions of power, questioning how and why they get there. When we see relatively homogeneous and masculine bodies, we only have to ask ourselves whether as a society and from politics we are doing enough to guarantee equal opportunities, more friendly spaces and other more open and inclusive ways of leading. Second, the glass ceilings and walls. Those hermetic power structures, continue to define what roles are assigned to whom based on the generic sex system. Women with some access to education can occupy spaces but only up to a certain point (in this case, be the second of, secretaries, vice-ministers and always advisors), and in certain work areas associated with an extension of care tasks and reproduction: habitat, equality, education or justice, among others.

Now we add a new ministry, the great campaign promise. The Ministry of Women, Gender and Diversity. A whole team dedicated to work on these issues, something not less and appropriate to the demands of our times. However, the commitment to equality and equity must be reflected beyond a ministry. It requires a commitment to mainstreaming and not a mere name.

We want diversity to ensure effective representativeness. But the mere existence of women in positions does not guarantee the gender perspective: it is not enough only with the greater presence of female bodies, but with people who are aware and work to reduce the inequalities of power that cross us through issues of gender, sexuality , race, age and class.

The demand for diversity in ministerial positions and the gender perspective at the transversal level is not a whim. It is shown that the greater the diversity, the better decisions are made. We have seen how the gender perspective allows us to be aware of multiple oppressions and build fairer societies. We want to have leadership figures that represent us, who know about our vulnerabilities and build forms of governance that tear down walls and glass ceilings.

In a context where, according to official INDEC figures, women have a lower participation in the labor market (42% against 64% of men), a higher unemployment rate (8.4% against 6.9% of men) and we charge 74% of the salary a man charges for the same task, we will fight until we get a different photo, at the height of our times, at the height of our battles.

Returning to the words of Simone de Beauvoir: “Never forget that a political, economic or religious crisis will suffice for women’s rights to be questioned again. These rights are never taken for granted, you must remain vigilant all your life.


Paula Kantor and Emilia Pioletti.


Cecilia Bustos Moreschi, cecilia.bustos.moreschi@fundeps.org

This document aims to present the observations and comments to the draft of IDB Invest’s new Environmental and Social Sustainability Policy from a gender perspective, which is practically absent in the current draft. These observations are made with the aim of making conflicts and existing problems in the actions of IDB Invest more visible, related to the violation of rights, inequality, violence and the sexual division of labour, first and foremost.