The service delivery role
Article 13 – Education and Lifelong Learning
1. The Signatory recognises the right to education for everyone, and further recognizes the right of access for all to vocational and continuing training. The Signatory recognises the vital role of education, at all stages of life, in delivering true equality of opportunity, in providing essential life and employment skills, and in opening up new possibilities for professional and vocational development.
2. The Signatory undertakes, within the range of its competences, to secure or promote equal access to education and vocational and continuing training for women and men, girls and boys.
3. The Signatory recognises the need to eliminate any stereotyped concept of the roles of women and men in all forms of education. In order to do this it undertakes to carry out or promote, as appropriate, the following measures:
- The revision of educational materials, of school and other educational programmes and teaching methods, to ensure that they combat stereotypical attitudes and practices
- The undertaking of specific actions to encourage non-traditional career choices
- The specific inclusion, within courses of civic education and education for citizenship, of elements that emphasize the importance of the equal participation of women and men in the democratic processes.
4. The Signatory recognises that the ways in which schools and other educational establishments are governed represents important models for children and young people. It therefore undertakes to promote the balanced representation of women and men at all levels of school management and governance.
Article 14 – Health
1. The Signatory recognizes the right of everyone to the enjoyment of a high standard of physical and mental health, and affirms that access to good quality health care and medical treatment and preventative health care for women and men is essential for the realization of this right.
2. The Signatory recognizes that in securing equal opportunities for women and men to enjoy good health, medical and health services must take account of their different needs. They further recognise that these needs arise not only from biological differences, but also from differences in living and working conditions and from stereotypical attitudes and assumptions.
3. The Signatory commits itself to take all reasonable actions, within the range of its responsibilities, to promote and secure the highest levels of good health of its citizens. To this end, the Signatory undertakes to carry out or promote, as appropriate, the following measures:
- Incorporating a gender based approach to the planning, resourcing and delivery of health and medical services
- Ensuring that health promotion activities, including those aimed at encouraging a healthy diet and the importance of exercise, include a recognition of the different needs and attitudes of women and men
- Ensuring that health workers, including those involved in health promotion, recognise the ways in which gender affects medical and health care, and take into account women’s and men’s different experience of that care
- Ensuring that women and men have access to appropriate health information.
Article 15 – Social Care and Services
1. The Signatory recognises that everyone has the right to necessary social services and to benefit from social assistance in the event of need.
2. The Signatory recognises that women and men have different needs which may arise from differences in their social and economic conditions and other factors. Therefore in order to ensure that women and men have equal access to social care and social services the Signatory will take all reasonable measures to:
- Incorporate a gender based approach to the planning, resourcing and delivery of social care and social services
- Ensure that those involved in the delivery of social care and social services recognise the ways in which gender affects those services, and take into account women’s and men’s different experience of that care.
Article 16 – Childcare
1. The Signatory recognizes the essential role that good quality, affordable childcare, available to all parents and carers, whatever their financial situation, plays in promoting true equality between women and men, and in enabling them to reconcile their work, public and private lives. The Signatory further recognizes the contribution that such childcare makes to the economic and social life and fabric of the local community and of society at large.
2. The Signatory commits itself to make the provision and promotion of such childcare, directly or through other providers, one of its priorities. It further undertakes to encourage the provision of such child care by others, including the provision of, or support for, child care by local employers.
3. The Signatory further recognizes that the upbringing of children requires a sharing of responsibility between men and women and society as a whole, and undertakes to counter the gender stereotype according to which child care is seen as being mainly the task or responsibility of women.
Article 17 – Care of other Dependants
1. The Signatory recognises that women and men have responsibilities to care for dependants other than children and that this responsibility may affect their ability to play a full role in economic and social life.
2. The Signatory further recognises that such caring responsibilities fall disproportionately on women and are therefore a barrier to equality of women and men.
3. The Signatory commits itself to counter this inequality by, as appropriate:
- Making the provision and promotion of high quality, affordable care for dependants, directly or through other providers, one of its priorities
- Providing support and promoting opportunities for those suffering social isolation as a result of their caring responsibilities
- Campaigning against the stereotype which assumes that caring for dependants is primarily the responsibility of women.
Article 18 – Social Inclusion
1. The Signatory recognises that everyone has the right to protection against poverty and social exclusion and furthermore that women, in general, are more likely to suffer from social exclusion because they have less access to resources, goods, services and opportunities than men.
2. The Signatory therefore undertakes, across the full range of its services and activities, and working with social partners, to take measures within the framework of an overall co-ordinated approach to:
- Promote the effective access of all of those who live or risk living in a situation of social exclusion or poverty, to employment, housing, training, education, culture, information and communication technologies, social and medical assistance
- Recognise the particular needs and situation of women experiencing social exclusion
- Promote the integration of migrant women and men, taking into account their specific needs.
Article 19 – Housing
1. The Signatory recognizes the right to housing, and affirms that access to good quality housing represents one of the most essential human needs, vital to the well-being of the individual and his or her family.
2. The Signatory recognizes further that women and men often have specific and distinct needs in relation to housing which must be taken fully into account, including the fact that:
a) On average, women have less income and resources than men, and therefore require housing that is affordable for them;
b) Women are the head of household in most single parent families, with consequent needs for access to social housing;
c) Vulnerable men are often over-represented amongst the homeless.
3. The Signatory therefore commits itself, as appropriate:
a) To provide or promote access to housing of an adequate size and standard and with a decent living environment for all, and accessible to essential services;
b) (To take steps to prevent homelessness, and in particular to provide assistance to the homeless, based on criteria of need, vulnerability and nondiscrimination;
c) To assist, according to their powers, in making the price of housing accessible to those without adequate resources.
4. The Signatory also undertakes to ensure or to promote the equal right of women and men to be the tenant, owner, or other form of property-holder, of their home, and also, to that end, to use its powers or influence to ensure that women have equal access to mortgages and other forms of financial assistance and credit for housing purposes.
Article 20 – Culture, Sport and Recreation
1. The Signatory recognizes the right of everyone to take part in cultural life and to enjoy the arts.
2. The Signatory furthermore recognizes the role that sport plays in contributing to the life of the community and to securing the rights to health as outlined in Article 14. It also recognises that women and men have the right to equal access to cultural, recreational and sporting activities and facilities.
3. The Signatory recognizes that women and men may have different experiences and interests in relation to culture, sport and recreation and that these may be the result of gender-stereotyped attitudes and actions, and therefore commits itself to carry out or promote measures including, as appropriate:
- Ensuring as far as is reasonable that women and men, boys and girls have equal provision and access to sporting, recreation and cultural facilities and activities
- Encouraging women and men, boys and girls to take part equally in sports and cultural activities, including those traditionally seen as predominantly “female” or “male”
- Encouraging artists and cultural and sporting associations to promote cultural and sporting activities which challenge stereotypical views of women and men
- Encouraging public library services to challenge gender stereotypes in their stock of books and other materials and in their promotional activities.
Article 21 – Safety and Security
1. The Signatory recognizes the right of each woman and man to security of the person, and to liberty of movement, and that these rights cannot be freely or equally exercised if women or men are unsafe or insecure, whether in the private or public domain, or if they feel unsafe or insecure.
2. The Signatory further recognizes that women and men, in part due to different obligations or lifestyles, often face differing problems of safety and security, which need to be addressed.
3. The Signatory therefore commits itself:
a) to analyse from a gender perspective the statistics concerning the volume and patterns of incidents (including serious crime against the individual) that affect the security or safety of women and men, and if appropriate to measure the level and nature of fear of crime or other sources of insecurity;
b) to develop and implement strategies, policies and actions, including specific improvements to the state or design of the local environment (for example, transport interchanges, car parks, street lighting), or to policing and related services, to enhance the practical security and safety of women and men, and to seek to reduce their respective perceptions of lack of safety and security.
Article 22 – Gender-Based Violence
1. The Signatory recognizes that gender-based violence, which disproportionately affects women, constitutes a violation of fundamental human rights and is an offence to the dignity and to the physical and emotional integrity of human beings.
2. The Signatory recognises that gender-based violence arises from the idea, on the part of the perpetrator, of the superiority of one sex over the other in the context of an unequal relationship of power.
3. The Signatory therefore commits itself to establish and strengthen policies and actions against gender-based violence, including:
- Providing or assisting specific support structures for victims
- Providing public information, in each of the mainly used local languages, on the assistance available in the area
- Ensuring that professional staff have training in identifying and supporting victims
- Ensuring that there is effective co-ordination between the relevant services such as the police, health and housing authorities
- Promoting awareness-raising campaigns and educational programmes aimed at potential and actual victims and perpetrators.
Article 23 – Human Trafficking
1. The Signatory recognizes that the crime of human trafficking, which disproportionately affects women and girls, constitutes a violation of fundamental human rights and an offence to the dignity and to the physical and emotional integrity of human beings.
2. The Signatory undertakes to establish and strengthen policies and actions to prevent human trafficking including as appropriate:
- Information and awareness-raising campaigns
- Training programmes for professional staff responsible for identifying and supporting victims
- Measures to discourage demand
- Appropriate measures to assist victims including access to medical treatment, adequate and secure housing and language translation.