UN Women Pakistan

Pakistan is the sixth most populous country in the world with a projected population of 188 million, of which women constitute half the population. Pakistan has adopted a number of key international commitments to gender equality and women’s human rights - the Beijing Platform for Action, the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women, the Millennium Declaration and the Millennium Development Goals. Despite these commitments, Pakistan’s ranking for gender equality remains one of the lowest in the world.

In moving towards realization of gender equality and women’s empowerment, UN Women provides support to innovative initiatives that promote women’s human rights, with special focus on their economic security, political participation and freedom from violence. In Pakistan, UN Women stands committed to base its work on a theory of change that is premised on three focus areas:

  • Aligning laws and policies of the governments to create a conducive environment for women’s empowerment and human rights;
  • Strengthening work processes, resources, and capacities in organizations to fulfill obligations;
  • Supporting community level initiatives that demonstrate how changes in practices and attitudes can be achieved to implement commitments that promote gender equality and women’s empowerment

Pakistan’s newly launched ‘Women’s Economic Participation and Empowerment - Status Report 2016’ emphasizes the complex and multifaceted concept of women’s economic empowerment and status of Pakistani women to different dimensions and determinants of economic participation.

The report highlights specific aspects of women’s economic empowerment and recommends a concerted effort to improve women’s access, opportunities and capabilities in order for them to participate as full economic actors in development and growth. Read more

News and Updates

Wheels of change in Punjab

21 September 2016

It was Defence Day in Pakistan, and for the 35 girls who had decorated their motorbikes with Pakistani flags and dressed up in green and white, it was time to show that Pakistan not only has female fighter pilots in the air, but Women on Wheels fighting for their right to mobility and independence on ground. Known as a conservative area, the city of Sargodha witnessed a rare sight when a women’s motorbike rally took place on Tuesday 6th of September, as... more

Pakistan-Afghanistan dialogue on women’s situation in displacement: Challenges and way forward for policy and practice

24 August 2016

A first joint initiative between Pakistan and Afghanistan took place on Thursday 25 August 2016 to assist women during displacement to enhance synergies so regional and provincial responses and coordination mechanisms incorporate women and girls as change agents and promote gender equality commitments in disasters and emergencies. The meeting ‘Pakistan-Afghanistan dialogue on women’s situation in displacement: Challenges and way forward for policy and practice’, was hosted... more

A journey of dislocation and survival

24 August 2016

“It’s a nightmare what we have gone through - displacement, camp life and survival” “Disasters affect everyone, but for women the impact is doubled” “We have seen our women give birth while being evacuated - many had miscarriages as we ran and walked the 8-hour route to safer grounds [camps]. They should have been provided with health facilities along the way. One mother put her baby in a carrier bag as she couldn't carry the child - it was dead when she... more

Pakistan’s Fiza Farhan Showcases Local Efforts to Improve Economic Outcomes for Women during the UN Secretary-General’s 2nd High-Level Panel Meeting on Women’s Economic Empowerment

01 August 2016

Fiza Farhan from Pakistan joined Members of the UN Secretary General’s High-Level Panel on Women Economic Empowerment in their 2nd meeting to discuss how women of Latin America and the Caribbean can continue advancing economic empowerment while preserving the progress already made. Costa Rica hosted the regional consultation on 14 July 2016, and was jointly supported by UN Women and the National Institute of Women of Costa Rica ... more

Ending Violence Against Women and Girls in Pakistan - A Collective Responsibility

28 July 2016

A nation ranked the world's third most dangerous place for girls and women in the Thomson Reuters Foundation expert poll in 2011; a nation ‘plagued’ with thousands of reported cases of violence against women every year from domestic violence, rape, acid attacks, sexual assault, kidnappings, and honor killings; and a nation with abysmally low convictions for these heinous crimes, it has become all the more important to collectively curb this menace through... more

Women Voters Come Out in Pakistan Administered Kashmir to make Democracy Work for Women Too

27 July 2016

“I am voting to exercise my power and identity and want to be included in the political process. I feel empowered that after all, in this male dominated society, I as a women have a voice and value of my vote” said one of the many female voters who participated in the State elections in Pakistan Administered Kashmir on Thursday 21 July 2016. Women voters came out wearing ‘Orange’, to show their support to end gender... more

Publications

Status Report on Womens Economic Participation and Empowerment

2016

The concept of women’s economic empowerment (WEE) combines “economic advancement” and “agency” (the power to make choices and decisions for one-self), which are in turn shaped by individual and community resources and by norms and institutions. In Pakistan social vulnerability juxtaposed with economic vulnerability keeps women underpaid and overworked, even when they overcome structural and social barriers to seek employment. The near invisibility of women in... more

United Nations Pakistan Newsletter

2016

Issue 1/2016 - In this issue: (*) Focus on Transforming slums into thriving communities. (*) Addressing the challenge of under-resourced urban settlements – A top priority. (*) Making cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient, and sustainable. (*) Guiding urban development in Pakistan. (*) Everyone’s dream is to live in cities without slums – Achieving sustainable urbanization... more

Timeline: Gender Equality in Review
Pakistan Country Office 2014

2015

A South-South cooperation of all eight South Asian countries placed the role of women in elections and political processes, including their leadership in decision-making on the agenda both at the national and regional levels. This exchange successfully brought out commonalities of problems faced by women in their political empowerment, and their underlying drivers... more

Featured publication

Status Report on Womens Economic Participation and Empowerment

In Pakistan social vulnerability juxtaposed with economic vulnerability keeps women underpaid and overworked, even when they overcome structural and social barriers to seek employment. The near invisibility of women in micro and macroeconomic policies... View/Download

Interview with H.E. Dr. Meher Taj Roghani

In her address H.E. Dr. Meher Taj Roghani pledged to ensure equality and empowerment for all women and girls saying: “This Country owes debt to girls and women for their resilience.” With your new appointment, as a female role model for democracy, could you... more

Giant Step for Humankind

UN Women welcomes the passage of the Protection of Women against Violence Bill 2015 by the Punjab Assembly on 24 February 2016. The introduction of this bill, which is arguably among the strongest pieces of legislation to ... more

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