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Putting women at the heart of NHRI planning

Graphic: PDHJ staff at the workshop

Timor Leste’s NHRI will strengthen its focus on gender across all aspects of its work and operations, following discussions at an APF workshop.

Timor Leste's national human rights institution (NHRI) will strengthen its focus on gender in its strategic plan and annual action plans in order to better respond to the needs of women and girls across the country.

The Provedoria dos Direitos Humanos e Justica (PDHJ) will also consider appointing a gender focal point to help guide the NHRI's efforts to "mainstream" a focus on women and girls throughout its work and policies.

These undertakings were made at a three-day workshop involving the Provedor, Jesuina Maria Ferreira Gomes, her two deputies and around 20 staff members of the PDHJ.

A representative from the national police service and a transgender man from a local LGBTI organisation also joined the discussions.

Graphic: Group photo of workshop participants and facilitators

The APF-led workshop, held in Dili from 8-10 May, was designed to provide participants with skills to better undertake gender analysis in their day-to-day work, as well as develop specialised programs that can benefit women and girls in both urban and regional centres of the country.

Presentations and group discussions looked at some of the pressing human rights issues facing women and girls in the country, as well as analysing the different treatment that women can face in relation to certain rights, such as non-discrimination, the right to education and the right to work.

The workshop also looked at different approaches that NHRIs can take to promote gender equality, based on the data they have and the gender analysis they conduct.

This is an excellent training to gain skills and knowledge to support the PDHJ to promote and protect women's and girl's human rights, to integrate gender analysis within our work and to develop an internal gender mainstreaming policy and strategy.

Provedor for Human Rights and Justice of Timor-Leste Logo Jesuina Maria Ferreira Gomes, Provedora, PDHJ

"It is absolutely critical that NHRIs consider gender when they undertake their complaint handling function, run a national inquiry or analyse the human rights impact of laws and policies," said APF Gender Focal Point Pip Dargan, who also helped facilitate the workshop.

"We are greatly encouraged by the strong commitment to gender equality shown by the leadership and staff of the PDHJ, especially their commitment to develop a gender mainstreaming policy and strategy to inform the work of the NHRI."

The APF workshop was led by Ms Alison Aggarwal, who has long-standing experience working on gender within NHRIs. She was supported by Faso Aishath, APF Human Rights and Planning Manager.

Date: 17 May 2019

Image credits

  1. PDHJ staff at the workshop - APF/Faso Aishath
  2. Group photo of workshop participants and facilitators - APF/Faso Aishath