Enforcing Rights and Correcting Wrongs: Overcoming Gender Barriers in Legal Systems


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This paper uncovers barriers to equality in legal systems that restrict human rights along gender lines – patent and latent; and proposes possible ways to redress legal discrimination for accelerating human development.

It explores three strategic avenues for simultaneous action. One, fixing institutions – laws, legal practices and modes of access; two, changing attitudes of those who create, uphold, and use laws; and three, establishing ongoing assessments to reveal inequalities and monitor progress. The focus of evidence is from countries of Asia-Pacific. However, given widespread gender-linked gaps in justice systems, and similarities of legal challenges posed, the paper is expected to be relevant also for other similarly placed countries.

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