Gender Equality Strategy

Following Executive approval on 24 September 2020, work began on the development of the Social Inclusion Strategies; Anti-Poverty, Disability, Gender Equality and Sexual Orientation. The Gender Equality Strategy will bring focus to identifying and addressing the issues, barriers and disadvantages that undermine equality of opportunity in our community and fulfil the commitments in New Decade, New Approach and the Executive’s Programme for Government. The Strategy will be published by the end of 2021, subject to Executive agreement.

Expert Panel

An Expert Panel has been established with the knowledge and expertise to allow it to make effective recommendations on the themes and key actions the Strategy should address.

The Panel have been drawn from the academic and voluntary and community sectors. They are:

  • Professor Ann Marie Gray: Professor of Social Policy and Co-Director of ARK
  • Siobhan Harding: Research and Policy Officer for the Women's Support Network (WSN)
  • Rachel Powell: Women’s Sector Lobbyist with the Women’s Resource and Development Agency (WRDA)
  • Louise Coyle : organisation Director for Northern Ireland Rural Women’s Network (NIRWN)

The terms of reference of the Expert Panel are published on the DfC website.

The Expert Panel have provided their recommendations to the Minister and their report is available.

Co-design Group

The Co-design Group will support and advise the Departmental Gender Policy team on the development and content of the Strategy and action plan and the wider stakeholder engagement that is conducted as the Strategy is developed, ensuring that the lived experiences of people are appropriately reflected in the Strategy.

The Group is made up of key stakeholders with invaluable expertise on the issues concerning Gender equality and who can represent the views of the sector and help DfC to ensure that the Strategy is evidence-based, takes account of lived experience, and meaningfully tackles inequalities and obstacles that directly affect the everyday lives faced by people for whom the Strategy will deliver.

Membership of the Gender Equality Strategy Co-Design Group is as follows (in no particular order):

  • Women's Policy Group (WPG)
  • Women’s Aid NI
  • Women’s Resource and Development Agency (WRDA)
  • NI Women’s Rural Network (NIWRN)
  • HERe NI
  • Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU)
  • NI Human Rights Commission (NIHRC)
  • NI Women’s European Platform (NIWEP)
  • Women’s Support Network (WSN)
  • NI Women’s Budget Group (NIWBG)
  • Equality Commission for NI (ECNI)
  • TransgenderNI
  • Migrant Centre NI (MCNI)
  • Youth Action NI
  • Men’s Advisory Project
  • Men’s Health Forum in Ireland
  • Men’s Action Network

The terms of reference of the Co-design Group are published on the DfC website.

Cross-departmental Working Group

The Gender Equality Strategy Cross-departmental Working Group will support DfC in the development and drafting of the new Gender Equality Strategy and action plan that is evidence-based and targeted to address objective need. This work will be based on the recommendations of the Gender Equality Strategy Expert Advisory Panel and the views expressed by the Gender Equality Strategy Co-Design Group and through wider stakeholder engagement

Membership of the Gender Equality Strategy Cross-departmental Working Group is as follows (in no particular order):

  • Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs
  • Department of Education
  • Department of Justice
  • The Executive Office
  • Department of Finance
  • Department for Infrastructure

The terms of reference of the Cross-departmental Working Group are published on the DfC website.

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