MIFTAH completes training workshops on application of the gender charter in local councils
December 01, 2021

Ramallah – 21/11/2021 – MIFTAH recently completed two days of training workshops on the application of the gender charter in local councils, targeting both men and women working in local councils in 11 West Bank districts, particularly in the planning, policies, follow-up and evaluation departments. The workshops were part of the joint efforts between MIFTAH and the Ministry of Local Government on the institutionalization of regulations pertaining to the gender charter, which was issued by the Ministry of Local Government in 2007. This includes the charter’s amendments, which were followed up by MIFTAH in 2018-2019.

The activity was part of the project “Institutionalizing the principles of comprehensive governance in local councils through application of the gender charter”, which aims to enhance employee capacities in the use of the manual on the executive bylaws in local government directorates and local councils, especially those in the planning, policies, follow-up and evaluation departments. The objective of this is to push towards the institutionalization of gender in local councils along with the auxiliary annex to the bylaws, which was prepared in cooperation and coordination with the Ministry of Local Government in 2019.

The training program covered several topics including: obstacles and challenges facing women in local councils, through a brief review of the gender charter; obligations of local councils towards the charter and executive and procedural regulations; the role of the Ministry of Local Government in implementing these regulations; planning for follow-up processes on the application of the gender charter in the directorates.

The participants confirmed the importance of employing the concepts of nondiscrimination, equity and equality in addition to participation and empowerment in the internal and external environment of local councils. This, they said, requires plans supported by gender-responsive budgets, formulated by integrating all sectors within the local councils and through organizing meetings between local government councils and directorates after the current elections are over. The objective, they continued, is to follow-up on the performance indicators regarding the implementation of the gender charter, which would be overseen by specialized departments in the Ministry of Local Government. The participants confirmed the need for periodic continuity in the capacity-building of employees on the gender charter, which they said would contribute to setting up channels of action within the councils and would support the developmental visions on the agenda of new members in local councils.

On her part, MIFTAH project manager Najwa Yaghi, said the training was part of MIFTAH’s strategic approaches to promote the principles of good governance in official institutions and local councils. She continued that they also fall within MIFTAH’s efforts to develop public policies that guarantee the protection of all citizens’ rights, the promotion of Palestinian women’s empowerment in public life and that guarantee their representation in decision-making positions.