Among the Government’s initiatives to promote equality between men and women is the Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities , a series of lines and guidelines for action aimed at creating a scenario of gender equality in the labor and social spheres. But, in what situation is this Plan? What future plans are there?
What is the Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities?
The Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities is an initiative aimed at establishing the guidelines to be met in order to achieve equality between men and women .
These plans have been developed since the creation, in 1983, of the Women’s Institute . However, after the approval of the Organic Law 3/2007 , of March 22, for the effective equality of women and men, the creation of these plans constitutes a turning point in terms of equality policies.
Thus, article 17 of this law states that “ the Government, in matters that are the responsibility of the State, will periodically approve a Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities, which will include measures to achieve the objective of equality between women and men and eliminate the discrimination on the basis of sex ”.
Therefore, these plans represent a reference framework with respect to the objectives to be met in terms of equality by the agents involved, and require monitoring and evaluation to be carried out during their validity to verify that the proposed goals are being achieved.
The Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities is an initiative aimed at establishing the guidelines to be met in order to achieve equality between men and women.
Who approves the Strategic Plan for Equality between women and men?
Regarding who approves the Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities , as we have already mentioned, it is the Government that is in charge of drafting and approving it, through the Ministry of Equality and the Women’s Institute.
Once the Plan has been drawn up, it is approved by the Council of Ministers and published in the BOE.
What Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities is in force?
Since the creation of the Women’s Institute, six Plans for Equal Opportunities have already been carried out. The first of them was developed in 1988 and, since then, they have been produced periodically.
The current equal opportunities plan is the III Strategic Plan for Effective Equality between Women and Men 2022-2025 , approved on March 8, 2022 by the Council of Ministers, based on the content proposed for the Equal Opportunities Plan 2019 , which was ultimately not approved.
But why this delay? The political instability of recent years, with motions of censure and continuous elections, seems to have left the approval of these plans in a secondary place.
Axes around which the more than 80 measures of the new Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities 2019-2022 presented by the Government revolve
The project presented two years ago by the Government for the new Strategic Plan for equal opportunities between men and women is developed around four fundamental pillars: gender mainstreaming, new social pact, citizenship and violence against women.
In said draft, some initiatives related to the new social pact stand out. They seek to promote the full inclusion of women in the current technological environment, for example, through scientific or technological training programs, or the creation of equality labels for those research centers or universities that promote effective equality between men and women.
The Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities 2014-2016
The Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities 2014-2016 has been the last one that has been in force. It was approved by the Council of Ministers on March 7, 2014.
This plan was developed around seven main axes and contained 224 actions and 35 goals to meet. The objective was to promote equality between men and women for reasons of justice and for the protection of the fundamental rights contained in the Constitution.
Likewise, it was established as a fundamental tool for economic and social development, growth based on the sum of talent for the creation of a stronger economy and focused on meeting the objectives of the Europe 2020 Strategy.
The objectives that the new Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities 2019-2022 will probably pursue
The latest Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities will aim to meet the goals set out in the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development. To do this, a series of guidelines will be established that we see below.
Reduce inequalities between women and men in the field of employment and the economy
One of the main objectives of the Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities is to eradicate gender differences in the workplace. Among the specific goals are eliminating pay inequalities, fostering internal promotion and the arrival of women in managerial positions, and promoting female entrepreneurship.
Eradicate the violence suffered by women for being women
The Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities also aims to eliminate from society those behaviors that discriminate against women for the mere fact of being women, with special emphasis on the eradication of gender violence.
Promote the participation of women in all areas of society
Effective equality between men and women is not only focused on the workplace, but also seeks to promote the equal participation of women in the social, political or economic environment.
Promote equal opportunities between women and men in education and research
The new Plan for Equal Opportunities will also have the purpose of promoting the insertion and development of women in the current technological scenario, promoting the development of training or research initiatives aimed at the female sex.
Avoid sexism in the media and advertising
The media and advertising have always been two vehicles for promoting inequalities between the sexes. In this sense, measures will be proposed to avoid sexism in the media and gender bias in the treatment of information in the media and in advertising.
Promote and consolidate equal opportunities in foreign policy and international cooperation
This Equal Opportunities Plan also aims to establish a framework adapted to European and international regulations, and to function as an element to promote cooperation between countries and the development of joint equality policies.
Instruments for the governance of the PEIO
In order to develop the PEIO effectively, the creation of a series of instruments is foreseen:
- Evaluation reports : to analyze the progress of the plan and its contribution to equality between women and men.
- Institutional collaboration : to promote cooperation and joint actions between the different public administrations, with special emphasis on the women’s associative movement.
- Coordination bodies : made up of the Inter-ministerial Commission for Equality between women and men and the Delegate Commission for Equality Policy.
- Participation body : represented by the Women’s Participation Council, attached to the General State Administration, through the Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality.
- Agents : between which they differ:
- Responsible parties: the Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality, through the General Directorate for Equal Opportunities and the Women’s Institute, in charge of designing the PEIO and ensuring its compliance.
- Support: the Equality Units of the different Ministries, which oversee the implementation of the proposed measures by the competent bodies.
- Coordination: the General Directorate for Equal Opportunities and the Women’s Institute, responsible for coordinating the equality units and monitoring and evaluating the plan.
Monitoring and evaluation
To verify the application of the measures of the plan, a monitoring and evaluation system will be established, probably inspired by the 2014-2016 Plan:
- PEIO indicators : the variables to be studied to assess the results of the plan are defined.
- PEIO monitoring : to obtain continuous information about the actions carried out to fulfill the plan.
- PEIO evaluation : assesses the achievements obtained and their contribution to promoting gender equality.
- PÈIO Agents : to assess the actions of the different agents and define their future competencies.
In any case, at the end of 2021 the new Equal Opportunities Plan has not yet been approved, so this information must be taken, for the time being, with reservations. We will see when the Government approves it but, at this rate, we will be talking about a 2022-2026 plan.
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