Photos: UNDP Uzbekistan

150 Deputies have been trained to conduct gender-legal expertise of Uzbekistan’s Laws, a practice which will help achieve lasting gender equality in society, economy and government.

On September 16-18 the training seminar ‘Gender Equality in Uzbekistan and Important Issues of Conducting Gender-legal Expertise’ was conducted by the Gender Commission of the Republic of Uzbekistan together with UNDP and the Ministry for Supporting Mahallas and Families. 150 Deputies of the Legislative Chamber of the Oliy Majlis (Parliament) took part of this seminar, held within the framework of the joint project ‘Empowering Women to Participate in Public Administration and Socio-Economic Life’.

At the seminar the participating deputies conducted gender-legal examinations of laws and draft laws, and discussed means used to ensure existing laws protect gender rights. Throughout the event, experts and scholars framed gender equality as being an inalienable human right, and presented both local and international experience in preventing gender discrimination through law. They also made recommendations on preparing legal acts that prevent direct or indirect discrimination on the basis of sex, and detailed the principles of conducting gender-legal expertise.

In Article 7 of the Law of the Republic of Uzbekistan ‘On guarantees of equal rights and opportunities for women and men’, it is stated that “Gender-legal expertise of legal acts and their drafts is carried out by state bodies and other organizations in the relevant areas of activity”.

According to the law, gender-legal expertise of legal acts and their drafts seeks to: 1) Reveal discrepancies between a legal act or draft with principles of ensuring equal rights and opportunities for women and men, which may cause direct or indirect discrimination on the basis of sex; 2) Assess consequences of adopting a legal act which may result in direct or indirect sex discrimination; 3) Identify possible discrimination risks which might be caused by applying a given act; and 4) Develop recommendations to eliminate identified norms which allow direct or indirect discrimination on the basis of sex.

Accordingly, as a means to ensure greater gender equality, it was decided that gender-legal expertise of legal acts and their projects should be conducted by state bodies and other organizations in their relevant areas of activity. Likewise, a regulation on the approach to conducting this process has been agreed upon.

However, given existing stereotypes and perceptions of genders and gender equality as a concept and practice, it is still important to work to improve knowledge and skills in this direction, and to form and develop a consciousness and culture that considers gender equality essential. This week’s training event served to achieve this outcome.

During the training seminar the participants presented questions on problems and misunderstandings encountered in the work process related to gender-legal expertise, received answers to their queries, and exchanged their experience.

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