Alternative Report to the UK Questionnaire Response of Progress of the Platform for Action and the Outcome of the Twenty-Third Session of the General Assembly

Saturday, December 25, 2004
Northern Ireland Women's European Platform
Western Europe

The UK government's report on progress in achieving gender equality and women's empowerment as set out in the Beijing Platform for Action (BPFA) masks large regional variations between England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The Northern Ireland Women's European Platform (NIWEP) identifies areas where Northern Ireland (NI) in particular falls behind. For example, there has never been a female high court judge, and despite high employment rates in the civil service, women only make up 13 per cent of senior positions. Despite a high percentage of applications, women only make up 16 per cent of the police force. There are fewer daycare spaces in NI as compared to the UK average, as well as higher average levels of poverty and women claiming income support. Recommendations include bringing women's access to services in line with existing UK legislation; addressing the gender pay gap; promoting women in senior decision-making roles; establishing gender budgets that have anti-poverty measures at their heart; and training in domestic violence for all court and police employees.

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UK Questionnaire Progress of Platform, NIWEP, Dec 2004