• Linda Mans

Women’s Rights beyond gender neutrality: in words and in action

The 7th reporting cycle of the UN Women's Convention started earlier this year. Jointly with Petra Snelders and Luna Vollebregt I am part of the writing team that will be involved in compiling the shadow reports and presenting them to the UN Committee (CEDAW) in this reporting period.

The final version of the first shadow report was sent to CEDAW on June 5 and has no fewer than 75 signatories. You can view the shadow report via this link.

Unfortunately, due to the restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic, it was not possible to organize physical meetings. We were disappointed with this, we would have liked to bring different organizations together to exchange ideas and network. Fortunately, we were able to conduct many online and telephone conversations and even organized a few small online expert meetings. The amount of input and information we received shows once again that gender equality in the Netherlands is not yet 'finished'.

What's next?

Based on the received shadow reports (our shadow report is one of three), a working group of the CEDAW committee will draw up a list of questions to the Netherlands, a List of Issues Prior to Reporting (LOIPR). The answers to these questions from the Dutch government form the 7th government's report. We will then respond to the government report in shadow report 2.0. After that, the constructive dialogue takes place, in which the CEDAW committee enters into discussions with both the Dutch delegation and representatives of NGOs. After all this, the committee deliberates and then adopts the concluding observations, in which the committee makes a number of recommendations to the Netherlands on the most important points (according to the committee).