Category: Engender (page 1 of 19)

Gender dimension, trafficking human beings

Gender dimension of trafficking in people

This study contributes to the identification and understanding of what is  meant by:

‘taking into account the gender perspective, to strengthen the prevention of this crime and protection of the victims thereof’, as required in

Article 1 of European Union (EU  Directive 2011/36/EU on Preventing and Combating Trafficking in Human Beings and Protecting its Victims in the context of the EU Strategy (COM(2012) 286 final) Towards the eradication of Trafficking in Human Beings.

The study contributes to Priority E Action 2 of the Strategy, which states that ‘the Commission will develop knowledge on the gender dimensions of human trafficking, including the gender

Consequences of the various forms of trafficking and potential differences in the vulnerability of men and women to victimisation and its impact on them’. Its specific objectives and tasks are to address:

  • gender dimension of vulnerability, recruitment, and victimisation
  • gender issues  related to traffickers and to those creating demand
  • an examination of law and policy responses on trafficking in human beings from a gender perspective

The study looks specifically at the gender dimension of  trafficking for purposes of sexual exploitation and follows statistical data evidence from

  • Eurostat, and data from
  • The European Police Office (Europol) and
  • United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC),

which sayss the most reported form of exploitation  is sexual exploitation and its strong gender dimension (96 % women and girls).

….. more EU policy about trafficking

–     Study on Gender Trafficking



Letter to FEMM Committee – Women and Homelessness


This communication has been sent to all  Femm Committee members today.

To members of FEMM Committee, European Parliament.

The European Parliament has recently launched a written declaration calling for a renewed focus on reducing homelessness through a specific EU action plan. This opportunity would ensure that the needs of vulnerable women experiencing homelessness are incorporated into EU policy.

The European Institute of Women Health (EIWH) calls on you, as a member of the FEMM committee, to sign and support this declaration.

There are many complex causes of homelessness among women and their families including but not limited to poverty, lack of income, substance abuse, mental health issues and domestic violence.

Homelessness affects women in a very different manner than it does men, giving rise to sex and gender-specific needs that have been largely ignored by policymakers.  Women often engage in coping strategies to avoid the appearance of homelessness; rather than presenting to shelters or sleep rough, they will generally sleep in parks, train stations, sofa-surf, or enter the sex trade.  Thus, women’s homelessness is a “hidden” form of homelessness, often forgotten or ignored.

Women’s homelessness and violence against women are strongly linked.  Domestic violence is a common cause of homelessness among women.  Moreover, homeless women are at increased risk of being raped; contracting a sexually transmitted disease, such as HIV/AIDS; beaten; attacked; chocked; strangled; exploited in the sex trade; and forced to join street gangs.

Poverty and homelessness also affect access to health care. Many homeless women have problems with alcohol and drug use, have undiagnosed physical conditions and/or have diagnosed mental health conditions.  The impact—both physically and psychologically— of homelessness on women is a major public health issue.

Homeless women possess very complex and sex and gender-specific needs.  To date women’s homelessness has not been given enough attention by policymakers.  There is a lack of European research on women’s  homelessness and no comparative data available.  We cannot sit by idly as such inequities persist throughout Europe.

By signing this declaration today, you are playing your part in protecting and vindicating the rights of vulnerable women who are experiencing or at risk of homelessness across the EU.  Only through concerted efforts can we reduce the burden of homelessness among women and their families throughout the EU.

No woman in Europe should be forced into a situation of homelessness or be exposed to violence. Ending homelessness is an achievable policy goal, but it requires a strong and immediate commitment from EU policymakers. Join the European Economic and Social Committee, the Committee of the Regions and the Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council in calling for EU support to address homelessness.

Homelessness can be ended. Sign the Written Declaration today. 

and show your support for this campaign by tweeting #mygoalisahome

Kind regards,

Peggy Maguire,

Director General,

European Institute of Womens Health

First Lancet transgender health series

Lancet publishes first transgender health series.

Transgender people live everywhere but their acceptance in communities and their freedom to live with their chosen gender identity or expression varies according to culture and society.

The series led by Sam Winter of Curtin University and Kevin Wylie of the University of Sheffield, is a result of a committed effort by experts and members of the transgender community-some of whom contributed to a piece about community voices for the series.

An initial peer review meeting was held in 2014 at Beijing, engaged members of the Asia Pacific transgender community and international reviewers. When the authors began their work in 2011, they warned the Lancet that transgender health was largely a concern of specialist journals. The challenges facing the transgender community are however global, multifactorial, extending across all medical specialties.

These challenges- so eloquently described by Sari Reisner and colleagues in their Series paper as

“situated vulnerabilities”

demand intersectoral responses.

Access to general health care is among the least researched fields of transgender health, and reflects inadequate knowledge of transgender health needs by primary health care workers and health professionals in other specialties.

For additional information and sending contributions, please contact:

Mrs. Eliane P. Santos, Advisor, Library and Information Networks,                                                                             KBR/ PAHO, Regional Office of the World Health Organisation                                                   

Pan American Health Organization,                                                                                                                                          Regional Office of World Health Organization for Americas
Office of the Assistant Director.                                                                                                                                                    Area of Knowledge Management,                                                                                                                                               Bioethics and Research (KBR)


European Journal of Psychotraumatology – new editorial gender policy

EU Journal of Psychotraumatology new editorial gender policies.

Editor-in-Chief Miranda Olff introduces new editorial Gender Policy:

Authors must comply with the EJPT gender policy,  developed on the basis of recommendations from the European Association of Science Editors (EASE) Gender Policy Committee. All articles submitted to EJPT must:

*   report the sex of research subjects
*   justify single sex studies
*   discriminate between sex and gender (mostly for human research)
*   analyse how sex or gender impact the results
*   discuss sex and gender issues when relevant

For more info, see the Journal guidelines here

14th Annual All-Ireland Gay Health Forum

Press Release

The 14th Annual All-Ireland Gay Health Forum in Dublin Castle today, Friday, 10th June by Marcella Corcoran Kennedy TD, Minister for State at the Department of Health with responsibility for Health Promotion,

The Minister welcomed the partnership approach shown by the HSE and various organisations attending the Forum in advancing the health and wellbeing of LGBT people in Ireland.

“Achieving a healthier Ireland needs collaboration and needs many areas of society to play its part, and this Forum is a great example of that partnership approach.

This is so important for the implementation of the sexual health strategy and I welcome the collaborative work underway on sharing information and good practice.

It is also important for our efforts to communicate key messages and information so people can be empowered to better look after their own health and wellbeing, including their sexual health and wellbeing.”

she said.

Conference on Gender Equality in Higher Education (and Research)

9th European Conference on Gender Equality in Higher Education (and Research)

The French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), the Université Paris Diderot, and the Université Sorbonne Paris Cité (USPC), with support from the French Ministry for National Education, Higher Education and Research, is inviting researchers, professors, administrators, policy-makers, practitioners and students to Paris, on 12-14 September 2016, to attend the 9th European Conference on Gender Equality in Higher Education. ….more

Research organisations are biased too!

Research organisations have gender inequalities too

Women make up over half of graduate students in the EU, but are only 33% of all researchers, holding only 20% of senior academic positions.

The European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE), in cooperation with the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Research and Innovation have developed an online tool to bring more gender equality into the research sector.

The tool will give practical guidance on how to set up and implement gender equality planning  to internal structures and processes, to bring greater gender awareness and so equality into research organisations.

20th October 2016, this tool will be launched at:

‘Mainstreaming gender equality into academic and research organisations’, Brussels

Carlos Moedas,Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation will open the conference of around 170 decision makers and experts working in the field.

Causes of women’s homelessness

Two resolutions by the European Parliament within the space of six weeks have called for more research into the rates and causes of women’s homelessness.  The first resolution, from 14 April 2016, on Meeting the antipoverty target in light of increasing household costs, states that:

“with rising household costs being a key driver of women’s homelessness”

The second resolution, 26 May 2016, on Poverty: a gender perspective, reasserted the need to “undertake
research into female homelessness and its causes and drivers, as :

“the phenomenon is inadequately captured in current data.”

Women’s homelessness, especially in younger women, is steadily increasing.

Whilst figures show that in most countries, women make up at least one quarter of the homeless population, the numbers are in fact likely to be much higher.

This is because women often engage in coping strategies such as sofa surfing, returning to an abusive relationship or sleeping rough in parks and stations in order to avoid presenting at homeless services or sleeping rough in more prominent spaces, where they may be more at risk of violence or harassment.

Women often become victims by suffering from

‘hidden homelessness,’
which results in women’s homelessness being excluded from policy development.

The European Commission shows true commitment to this issue by funding research into both the structural inequalities women face ….. more


Women multi task but their health can suffer

Women wear many hats – from family responsibility , to successful professionals in fulltime work. This multi-tasking often causes them to neglect their own health.    This phenomenon is not limited to the developed world or the US.  it is also the norm in many poor and developing societies.  Lets check the example of women and their health in India which is now an emerging economy  ……. more

Sex and Gender

Sex and Gender: download

Sex and gender are often been confused for having the same meaning. To fully understand how they affect health, there needs to be a clear distinction between them. Interchanging the two words can introduce forms of bias and be harmful to research.

What is Sex?

Sex is the natural condition of a person. It refers to biological and  physical characteristics[i]. Someone is male or female depending on what features they are born with. There are some exceptions with people who aren’t born with a clearly identifiable sex- this is referred to as intersex. This includes:

  • Chromosomes
  • Hormones
  • Sex organs

What is Gender?

Gender is the social role of a male or female. It is more complex than sex and is formed through a variety of factors. Society teaches expectations, norms, and relationships that influence a person’s gender role as either masculine or feminine. Gender affects a variety of areas including[ii]:

  • economic (income, credit);
  • social (social networks);
  • political (leadership, participation);
  • information and education (health literacy, academic);
  • time (access to health services); and
  • internal (self confidence/esteem)

Gender is harmful when it limits resources and opportunity in these areas either through passive stereotyping or outward prejudice.

Why does it matter?

The interchangeability between the words sex and gender ignores the complex relationship between the two words and how they affect each other. This includes the health field where research still doesn’t account for biological sex or physiological gender differences. Promoting an understanding of the difference between sex and gender will enable for there to be more equitable health and research practices.


[i] Nobelius, A. (2004, June 23). What is the difference between sex and gender? Retrieved March 22, 2016, from

[ii] Gender. (2015, August). Retrieved March 22, 2016, from


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