Panel 2: Gender-equal socioeconomic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic

Statement of the Nordic-Baltic countries at the HRC47 Annual full-day discussion on the human rights of women:
Panel 2: Gender-equal socioeconomic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic

Intervention by the Nordic and Baltic States
delivered by H.E. Amb. Andrius Krivas, Permanent Representative of Lithuania in Geneva

6 July 2021

I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic countries Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Norway, Sweden and my own country Lithuania.

We thank distinguished panelists for their contributions to this important discussion.

As the pandemic continues to affect our lives in many negative ways, including increase in gender based violence, unintended pregnancies and child marriage. Setbacks in gender equality and women’s and girls’ equal economic participation are unprecedented. In addition to pre- existing multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination and inequalities in labour market, women and girls absorbed majority of care needs during the pandemic, sacrificing their retention and return to employment, livelihood and education.

We applaud the courage of women who have been and still are at the frontline of responding to the pandemic. At the same time the worrying trend of their underrepresentation in decision making processes continues.

Now it’s the time for change. Covid-19 should be seen as an opportunity to build back better, greener and more gender equal. We encourage all states to develop gender-transformative economic recovery plans, ensure full, equal, effective and meaningful participation of women in decision-making processes and take measures to achieve financial inclusion, equal pay and equal opportunities for all women and girls.

The Nordic-Baltic countries firmly believe that women are drivers of change. What concrete steps should be taken to ensure the creation of enabling environment for all women and girls – in all their diversity - to achieve their full empowerment?