Continuing with the success of the Webinar Cycle in times of Covid-19, on Wednesday, June 17, we discussed the differential effect of the pandemic on women and girls. The session was attended by distinguished panelists María Inés Salamanca, Coordinator of UN Women Chile, Ximena Gauché Marchetti, Deputy Director of Gender Equity and Diversity, Universidad de Concepción, Chile, and Selene Soto Rodríguez, Senior Lawyer at Womens’ Link Worldwide.
The event began with the speech of Ximena Gauché, who focused her presentation on providing tools to identify the differential impacts on women and girls, explaining what some of these effects are and what can be done to address them. In that sense, she indicated that we are immersed in a patriarchal system from which a series of characteristics emerge in which society is articulated (heteronormative, cisnormative, sexist); therefore, to combat these differential effects, gender stereotypes and biases must be identified, applying the intersectionality approach, thinking about permanence and transversality and recognizing and following the standards and recommendations on the subject.
In turn, María Inés Salamanca highlighted the importance of the 2030 Agenda and indicated that the current crisis will mean setbacks for many countries; therefore, a challenge will be to maintain what has been achieved in terms of women’s rights. She noted the health impacts of the crisis in Latin America and the Caribbean, such as that 18 million women will lose regular access to contraceptives. To learn more about the measures adopted by governments in this area, she reported that UN Women Chile and ECLAC have worked together in an observatory of the measures adopted by governments in relation to COVID-19. In addition, she identified some impacts of COVID-19 on “women on sticky floors,” “women on broken stairs,” and “glass ceiling women.”
Selene Soto began her speech by sharing a video that Women’s Link has generated for the launch of the Guidelines for protecting the rights of women and girls in the context of COVID-19. This guidelines address 4 topics: right to violence-free living, access to justice, access to sexual and reproductive health services, and women and girls in situations of human mobility, while presenting a practical landing for human rights standards on how States should mainstream the gender approach in three dimensions: how States should mainstream the gender approach in their responses to the pandemic, how to complement the efforts of humanitarian agencies that support States, and how civil society and human rights organizations can use it.
For more information, you can access the presentations, recording of the session and complementary material:
Guidelines for protecting the rights of women and girls in the context of COVID-19 (crear pagina del document en ingles)
For more information about the webinars, as well as the actions carried out by the SAIs, and the COVID-19 Blog, visit the page: