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This section of the library provides resources to help women political leaders participate substantively in government.
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Translating Women’s Participation in Politics into Critical Actions and Influence

Author: International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance | As a South-South forum, the Inter-Regional Seminar on Women’s Political Empowerment brought together representatives of 36 parliaments from across the globe to discuss the current state of women’s political representation in parliaments and the important policy objectives that women are pursuing within their legislatures. The objective of the seminar was to identify and promote optimal approaches that translate women’s presence in leadership and decision making into critical action and influence. This document provides a record of the seminar discussions and subsequent conclusions and decisions.

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A Gender Responsive Parliament: A Handbook on Gender Mainstreaming in the Legislature

Author: Secretariat-General of the Indonesian Parliament & UN Development Programme | Initially introduced through the Beijing Declaration and Action Platform of 1995, gender mainstreaming is a strategy used to realize gender justice. Gender mainstreaming is commonly defined as a process to evaluate the implication of each measure planned for women and men, including regulations, policies, or programs, in every field and at all levels. This handbook was prepared to provide a simple reference on gender mainstreaming in the legislative function, with particular focus on producing legislation and budgets. It is directed at parliamentarians and legal drafters who require understanding of gender issues.

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Women, Peace and Security: Practical Guidance on Using Law to Empower Women in Post-Conflict Systems

Author: Julie L Arostegui & Veronica Eragu Bichetero | United Nations Security Council resolutions provide an international framework recognizing the important role of women in peace and security. However, practitioners widely recognize the need to closely connect this framework to legal instruments in order to make a real difference in the lives of women in conflict-affected countries. This toolkit provides practical guidance on how to integrate principles of gender equality into legal systems and how this has been done. The analyses and recommendations in the toolkit are based mainly on experiences in the Great Lakes Region of Africa, specifically on case studies performed in Uganda and Rwanda as well as consultations and workshops held in South Sudan and Sudan, but are applicable to practitioners broadly.

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Inclusive Security, Sustainable Peace: A Toolkit for Advocacy and Action

Author: International Alert & Women Waging Peace | In October 2000, for the first time in its history, the United Nations Security Council acknowledged that women must play a key role in promoting sustainable peace by unanimously adopting Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security. The resolution calls on all actors to ensure women’s participation in peace processes from the prevention of conflict to negotiations to post war reconstruction. This toolkit is intended as a resource for women peace builders and practitioners to engage effectively in peace and security issues. It highlights practical examples of women’s contributions to the peace and security field and offers concrete ideas for advocacy and strategic action.

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Combating Trafficking in Persons: A Handbook for Parliamentarians

Author: UN Office on Drugs and Crime & Inter-Parliamentary Union | Trafficking in persons is a form of modern-day slavery, a human rights violation that overwhelmingly targets women and children. This handbook was created to encourage parliamentarians to take an active role in stopping human trafficking and to provide them with the knowledge to do so. The handbook contains a compilation of international laws and good practices developed to combat human trafficking, and offers guidance on how national legislation can be brought in line with international standards. It outlines measures to prevent commission of the crime, to prosecute offenders, and to protect victims. It also contains advice on how to report on this crime and how to enlist civil society in the cause.

French

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Sustaining Parliamentary Action to Improve Maternal, Newborn and Child Health

Author: Inter-Parliamentary Union | Maternal, newborn, and child health (MNCH) is now recognized as one of the most critical issues facing human development, requiring global solidarity and concerted urgent action. Recent global and national efforts have yielded significant progress in reducing maternal and child mortality, particularly when they have spotlighted the role of parliamentarians in tackling the issue. This handbook provides parliamentarians and those involved in parliamentary processes with the information they need to take action on MNCH.

French, Spanish

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Missing Pieces: A Guide for Reducing Gun Violence Through Parliamentary Action

Author: Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue & Inter-Parliamentary Union | Worldwide, the majority of small arms and light weapons are held not by military personnel of law enforcement officers, but by private citizens. As these guns are routinely misused, stolen, or otherwise leaked into the illicit trade, it is imperative that gun ownership and access by civilians be adequately regulated and limited at the national level. Parliamentarian action is critical to turning the tide of gun proliferation and violence. By strengthening or creating national laws, improving implementation and enforcement, stimulating and leading public debate, parliaments can set new standards for reducing the societal impacts of gun violence. This guide is written for parliamentarians, their advisors, and civil society to guide, inspire, and suggest action.

French, Spanish

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Internal Displacement: Responsibility and Action

Author: Inter-Parliamentary Union & The UN Refugee Agency | More people than ever before are now displaced within their country. Experience has shown that existing laws, which are generally not designed for situations of humanitarian crisis, are often unable to adequately meet the challenges caused by internal displacement. This handbook aims to assist parliamentarians in developing national laws on internal displacement. Given the extremely vulnerable situation of internally displaced persons (IDPs), it is up to the State (and by extension, the legislature) to enact a legislative framework that guarantees their rights.

French

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Supporting Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament

Author: Inter-Parliamentary Union & Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament | While treaties and conventions have been signed and individual governments have taken steps towards reducing the nuclear threat, the situation remains dire. Parliamentarians have a responsibility to protect the world and its future generations from this threat. This handbook has been produced to assist parliamentarians in implementing nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament goals. It highlights a range of existing good policies and practices aimed at furthering nuclear disarmament, curbing nuclear proliferation, or safeguarding nuclear security. Further, the handbook explores what parliamentarians can do to craft the legislative agendas needed to advance these goals.

French, Russian, Spanish

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Parliament and Democracy in the Twenty-First Century: A Guide to Good Practice

Author: David Beetham | What is the parliamentary contribution to democracy? What makes a parliament or legislature itself democratic? How might it become more so? These are the questions which this guide seeks to answer. It provides a comprehensive account of the central role that parliament plays in a democracy, and explains what it means for a parliament to be truly representative, transparent, accessible, accountable, and effective in its many functions. The purpose of this guide is to use the democratic practices outlined in its pages to inspire similar or better practices throughout the global parliamentary community.

Arabic, French, Spanish

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Guidelines for Women’s Caucuses

Author: Inter-Parliamentary Union | Women account for only about 20 percent of the world’s parliamentarians and face an institution governed according to largely male perspectives. Under these conditions, women parliamentarians tend to coalesce and create spaces enabling them to make their voices heard, forge ties of mutual solidarity, and contribute to the work of parliament. The purpose of these guidelines is to equip women with the tools needed to create an effective, sustainable caucus and outline a standardized, step-by-step process for doing so. These guidelines can also help to improve the effectiveness of existing caucuses.

French

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Parliament, the Budget, and Gender

Author: Joachim Werner & Winnie Byanyima | Through national budgets, governments outline their policy intentions and the resources they intend to use to implement them. Increasing demands for democracy and good governance require that parliaments play a more active role in the budgetary process. This handbook is intended as a reference tool, and sets out practical examples of parliament’s active engagement in the budgetary process. It seeks to advance parliament’s own institutional capacity to make a positive impact on the budget, and to equip parliament with the necessary tools to examine the budget from a gender perspective.

Arabic, French

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