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Women’s right to participate in politics in the context of CEDAW – a regional perspective. supported by:. Global picture of women in Politics.
In East and Southeast Asia women remain underrepresented in political and decision-making positions.
No country in the region has met the 30% “critical mass” of women in parliament
4 countries in the region have yet to reach 20%
National vs. sub-national Women’s Political Representation in ESEA
CEDAW defines what constitutes discrimination against women and provides a framework for national action to end such discrimination.
Articles 2-5 require parties to: enact laws and pursue policies designed to eliminate discrimination against women (Article 2). ensure the full development and advancement of of women (Article 3) Adopt temporary special measures aimed at accelerating de facto equality between men and women (Article 4) eliminate stereotypes, prejudices and practices that are harmful to women (Article 5)
States Parties shall ensure women have, on equal terms with men, the right:
(a) To vote in all elections and public referenda and to be eligible for election to all publicly elected bodies;
(b) To participate in the formulation and implementation of government policy; hold public office and perform all public functions at all levels of government;
(c) To participate in NGOs and associations concerned with the public and political life of the country
In 1999 the Committee issued GR 25 which elaborates on article 4 of CEDAW and builds on earlier general recommendations related to temporary special measures.
Specifically GR 25 states:
The purposes of temporary special measures are to:
CEDAW’s Principle of Substantive Equality
CEDAW stresses the importance of equality of opportunity in terms of women’s entitlements on equal terms with men to the resources of the country which must be secured by a framework of laws and policies and supported by institutions and mechanisms for their operation.
It goes beyond this by emphasizing that state action must have results. In other words
The indicators of state progress lie not just in what the state does, but what it achieves in terms of real change for women
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