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Labour Code revision opportunity to promote gender equality

Update: April, 26/2018 - 17:27
Experts discuss gender quality during the workshop. — VNS Photo Thu Trang
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — Experts discussed effective strategies and interventions to solve gender discriminations present in the provisions of the current 2012 Labour Code during a workshop held in Hà Nội on Thursday.

The workshop, titled “General Consultation on Gender Mainstreaming and Gender Impact Assessment of the Proposal to Revise Việt Nam’s Labour Code”, was co-organised by the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, UN Women and Australian Embassy. Over 80 experts from governmental agencies, local and international organisations and academia participated in the workshop.

During the workshop, experts shared policy recommendations for Việt Nam to revise the Labour Code and create an equal working environment for both men and women.

The workshop was organised in the context of increasing trade integration and requirements of the 2013 Constitution and labour treaties ratified by Việt Nam.

Speaking at the workshop, Elisa Fernandez, head of office of UN Women Việt Nam, highlighted that the revision of the Labour Code presented an opportunity to address the recommendations of the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women Committee, which included adopting the same mandatory retirement age for women and men and reviewing and reducing the list of occupations prohibited for women.

“Gender equality in the world of work is not only a rights issue. As the growing body of evidence shows, gender equality significantly contributes to advancing economies and sustainable development,” she said.

Lê Thị Nguyệt, vice chairwoman of the National Assembly’s Social Affairs Committee, said, “From international practices and experience, it is time to change the approach of regulations ‘protecting female workers’ into regulations ‘promoting gender equality’ for male and female workers.”

The upcoming revision provided an opportunity to align the Labour Code with Việt Nam’s obligations towards gender equality and address emerging issues around gender equality and the world of work, she said.

Experts proposed some major changes, including having the same retirement age for men and women and strengthening provisions to address sexual harassment at the workplace.

They also proposed measures to protect and promote both maternal and paternal rights and responsibilities to ensure that childcare is not just restricted to women and that men take equal responsibility in looking after their children. — VNS


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