"Experience shows that there can be no gender equality unless women can access justice and dispense justice," IDLO Director of External Relations Judit Arenas has said at the launch of the GQUAL campaign for gender parity in international bodies. "Equal participation of women is fundamental to democracy and inclusive societies, which in turn bring better development dividends."
Launched at the United Nations in New York, GQUAL (for 'gender-equal") aims to encourage the appointment of qualified women in international courts and other bodies. It seeks to highlight current the gender imbalance, mobilize support for parity and publicize information regarding available positions. GQUAL strongly emphasizes the role of States in promoting women candidates and the enforcement of guidelines designed to guarantee gender equality.
Speaking as a guest, Ms. Arenas connected GQUAL's objectives to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and to IDLO's own experience. "Our work on gender equality and legal empowerment of women," she said, "has shown that in many countries justice BY women produces better justice FOR women." She made special reference to Afghanistan, where IDLO has conducted and published well-regarded research on the subject.
The GQUAL launch was co-sponsored the Center for Justice and International Law and the Permanent UN Missions of Argentina, Costa Rica, Norway, Panama and Sweden.