State level workshop on Gender Mainstreaming
A State level workshop on Gender Mainstreaming was held in Imphal on May 30, 2018. The programme was ogansied y IRMA with support from Oxfam-India.
Gender mainstreaming is not just about bringing changes for women nor is it for the benefit of women alone but involves changing gender relationships between women and men in terms of sharing of power and responsibility that benefits women, men and society as a whole. However the weight of restrictive social norms, lack of access to education and trainings, violence against women, domestic roles with participation in economic production (paid or unpaid) makes it virtually impossible for the majority of women to enter the mainstream.
To bring these women into the mainstream on any scale, systematic and significant changes are needed in mainstream social and economic arrangements as well as among the women themselves. Trainings and media campaigns that target men rather than women and to raise public awareness, curriculum change in the education system. Gender statistics/gender disaggregated data is essential to make discrimination and women’s relative deprivation visible and helpful for policy makers and programme managers to monitor gender differential/gaps. Gender Budgeting require to increase women’s active participation in programmes, decision making and access to benefits.
There is need for gender mainstreaming in all policies and programmes, including humanitarian and emergency response interventions. The recent catastrophes in Manipur especially the major earthquake in 2016 and the recurrent floods in 2017 prompted us to undertake a survey on the post flood interventions in selected areas affected by the flood with support from OXFAM-India
The objective of the workshop is:
- to understand gender issues in humanitarian context and gender mainstreaming in the larger framework of gender equality and
- To enhance the capacity of civil societies and key stakeholders for policy changes and programme support to meet the specific gender needs.
The survey report was shared and discussed with concerned stakeholders at the district level followed by a state level consultation at Imphal involving CSOs, academicians and Government line departments. Following are some of the recommendations adopted from suggestions and comments by the panelist and participants.
- Adopt policies – enforceable and sensitive for gender equality.
- Gender budgeting should be done to enhance gender specific resource allocation for women and ensure that the funds under these heads are not diverted.
- Strengthen the Manipur State Women Commission with more power and resources
- Review and amend traditional and customary laws – particularly those related to marriage, divorce and inheritance rights.
- Provide and promote technical education to women.
- Implement special initiatives to promote and nurture entrepreneurships, enterprises and economic empowerment of women.
- Ensure uninterrupted services under social welfare - social security schemes such as widow pension, etc especially during disasters.
- Gender-inclusive action plan during relief and disaster intervention.
- Life-skill training for unemployed youth and unorganized women worker
- Revive and make functional the Manipur State Human Rights Commission.
- Inclusion of gender in the school curriculum from primary level.
- Maintain gender disaggregated data in all programme implementations of government schemes.