The EU-LAC Foundation strengthens alliances for gender equality at CSW 68

During the 68th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) in New York, the EU-LAC Foundation reaffirmed its commitment to promoting gender equality and implementing the right to care. In addition to organizing the High-Level Dialogue: Foundations for a Bi-regional Care Pact between Latin America, the Caribbean, and the European Union, Foundation representatives held a series of strategic meetings and participated in various events.

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Leire Pajín, President of the EU-LAC Foundation, co-moderated the parallel event "Financing for Gender Equality: Reducing Inequalities and Strengthening Democracies," organized by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The meeting featured prominent figures such as Rosângela Lula da Silva from Brazil, Karin Herrera, Vice President of Guatemala, Mayra Jiménez, Minister for Women of the Dominican Republic, Aina Calvo Sastre, Secretary of State for Equality and Women's Eradication from Spain, and María Noel Vaeza, Regional Director of UN Women for Latin America and the Caribbean, who highlighted how structural and overlapping inequalities, specifically concerning Latin America and the Caribbean, constitute the Achilles' heel of democracies.

The EU-LAC Foundation was also invited to the Day of Local and Regional Governments convened by the United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) network. Municipal and regional authorities from around the world acknowledged that poverty is linked to unequal distribution of resources, labor, and care, as well as to a global financial architecture that perpetuates inequalities, with serious repercussions for women and marginalized populations. Participants called for a shift in the way development is measured, moving away from Gross Domestic Product and towards a feminist economy that prioritizes inclusion, care, and life sustainability. Similar to the High-Level Dialogue organized by the EU-LAC Foundation, attendees stressed the need to recognize care as a right and to ensure redistribution of care work, support for caregivers, and social protection through local care systems and public centers, acknowledged as key political actors.

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The Foundation also held bilateral meetings with representatives of partner organizations involved in initiatives promoting gender equality and the Bi-regional Care Pact. Exchanges with María Noel Vaeza, Regional Director of UN Women for Latin America and the Caribbean; Lucia Scuro, Social Affairs Officer at ECLAC; and Ana Moreno, Technical Secretary of the Global Care Alliance, allowed discussions on the next steps towards the Regional Conference on Women and the upcoming CELAC-EU Summit, scheduled for the second half of 2025.

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One of the highlighted meetings was with Nadine Gasman Zylberman, President of the National Institute for Women of Mexico (INMUJERES) and a key figure in the EU-LAC International Women's Network. Gasman expressed her commitment to deepening bi-regional dialogue on the right to care, sharing valuable experiences from Mexico, such as the first National Survey for the Care System conducted in 2022. Additionally, she announced that Mexico will host the 16th Conference on Women of Latin America and the Caribbean in 2025, an event focusing on the implementation and financing of the right to care.

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Furthermore, during a meeting with Michelle Muschett, Director of the Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean of UNDP, fruitful cooperation over the past year was reaffirmed, agreeing on future initiatives in areas such as multilateral cooperation, just transitions, and digitalization.

 

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The President of the Foundation, Leire Pajín, and the Acting Programs Director, Anna Barrera, met with Carlien Scheele, Director of the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE), and Marusa Gortnar, Head of the Research and Policy Support Unit of EIGE. They addressed three concerns shared by women in Europe, Latin America, and the Caribbean: care work, women's leadership in democracies, and transformative climate actions from a gender perspective.

The EU-LAC Foundation's participation in CSW 68 underscores its essential role in building bridges and strengthening dialogue and cooperation between Europe, Latin America, and the Caribbean on critical gender and care issues

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