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INTEGRATING A GENDER PERSPECTIVEINTO HUMAN RIGHTS INVESTIGATIONSGuidance and PracticeAdvance VersionPreparationInvestigationEvaluationRepor tPresentationRemarks

Copyright 2018 United NationsHR/PUB/18/4 (Advance version)This advance version has not been formally edited. Its contents are subject to change from that of the final print andelectronic publication. While reasonable efforts have been made to ensure that its contents are factually correct andproperly referenced, the United Nations (OHCHR) does not accept responsibility for the accuracy and completenessof the contents, and shall not be liable for any loss or damage that may be occasioned directly or indirectly throughthe use of, or reliance on, the contents of this advance version.This advance version is available open access by complying with the Creative Commons license created for intergovernmental organizations, available at: lishers must remove the OHCHR logo from their edition and create a new cover design. Translations of thisadvance version must bear the following disclaimer:“The present work is an unofficial translation for which the publisher accepts full responsibility.”Publishers should e-mail the file of their edition to [email protected] Photocopies and reproductions of excerptsof this advance version are allowed with proper credits.United Nations publication, issued by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights(OHCHR), on the basis of an internal guidance note (September 2016).Cover image credit: UNHCR/Roger ArnoldPhotos: UN Photo/Elma Okic, ITCILO Photos, Unsplash/Adolfo Felix, Unsplash/Kaitlyn BakerThe designations employed and the presentation of the material in this publication do not imply the expressionof any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the United Nations concerning the legal status of anycountry, territory, city or area, or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.Symbols of United Nations documents are composed of capital letters combined with figures. Mention of such afigure indicates a reference to a United Nations document.


ContentsAbbreviations and acronyms. 6Key terminology. 7Introduction. 10I.Preparation. 14A. Selection of the team. 14B. Planning the investigation. 16C. Understanding the context and developing an investigation plan. 19D. Training/briefing the team on gender integration. 22E. Checklist. 23II. Investigation and information gathering. 24A. Information gathering and sources of information. 24B. Collecting sex and age-disaggregated data. 26C. Overcoming challenges during information gathering. 26D. Investigating gender-based violence, including sexual violence. 30E. Organizing information.34F. Checklist. 35III. Evaluation and analysis of information. 38A. Discrimination and violence in a continuum: how pre-existing gender-based discriminationcan expose women, girls and LGBTI persons to specific violations. 38B. Gendered impacts of violations or abuses. 43C. The connection between gender-based violence and other human rights violations or abuses. 46D. Intersecting forms of discrimination. 48E. Checklist. 49IV. Report writing. 50A. Integrating gender throughout the report. 50B. Using gender-sensitive language . 52C. Prioritizing gender-specific violations and concerns within the report . 53D. Drafting recommendations. 53E. Checklist. 55V. Presentation at the Human Rights Council or other mandating entitiesand sharing gender-related findings. 56VI. Concluding remarks. 58List of reports. 59

I N T E G R AT I N G A G E N D E R P E R S P E C T I V E I N T O H U M A N R I G H T S I N V E S T I G AT I O N S G U I D A N C E A N D P R A C T I C E A D VA N C E V E R S I O NAbbreviations and acronymsCATCommittee against TortureCEDAWConvention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against WomenCESCRCommittee on Economic, Social and Cultural RightsCOICommissions of InquiryCRCCommittee on the Rights of the ChildIDPsInternally displaced personsIHLInternational humanitarian lawIHRLInternational human rights lawFFMFact-finding MissionsGBVGender-based violenceHIVHuman Immunodeficiency VirusHRCHuman Rights CouncilLGBTILesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex personsOHCHROffice of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human RightsSCSecurity CouncilSCRSecurity Council ResolutionsSGBVSexual and gender-based violenceUNUnited NationsWGDAWWorking Group on Discrimination against Women in Law and in Practice6

Key terminologyGender-based discrimination includes anydistinction, exclusion, or restriction due to genderthat has the effect or purpose of impairing ornullifying the recognition, enjoyment, or exerciseof human rights and fundamental freedoms.Direct discrimination occurs when a differencein treatment relies directly on distinctions basedexclusively on characteristics of an individualrelated to the sex and gender, which cannotbe justified objective and reasonable grounds(e.g., laws excluding women from serving asjudges). Indirect discrimination occurs when alaw, policy, programme or practice appears tobe neutral, but has a disproportionate negativeeffect on women or men when implemented(e.g., pension schemes that exclude, forinstance, part-time workers, most of whom arewomen).Gender refers to the socially constructedidentities, attributes and roles of persons inrelation to their sex and the social and culturalmeanings attached to biological differencesbased on sex. The meaning of such sociallyconstructed identities, attributes and roles variesacross societies, communities and groups andover time. This often results in hierarchicalrelationships between women and men andan unequal distribution of power and rights,favouring men and disadvantaging womenand affecting all members of society. The socialpositioning of women and men is affected bypolitical, economic, cultural, social, religious,ideological and environmental factors.Gender analysis is a key tool to helprecognize, understand and make visible thegendered nature of human rights violations,including their specific and differential impacton women, men and others, as well ashuman rights violations based on gender thatspecifically target LGBTI. It can help to identifydifferences in the enjoyment of all human rightsand fundamental freedoms in all spheres of life.It also seeks to analyse power relations withinthe larger socio-cultural, economic, politicaland environmental contexts to understand theroot causes of discrimination and inequality.Gender analysis is an integral part of a humanrights-based approach1, allowing one to see themany ways that gender affects human rights.As a starting point for gender integration, it canpropose measures that will close the gender gapbetween international human rights standardsand the everyday human rights situation on theground.1Gender-based violence (GBV) is violencedirected toward, or disproportionately affectingsomeone because of their gender or sex. Suchviolence takes multiple forms, including acts oromissions intended or likely to cause or resultin death or physical, sexual, psychological oreconomic harm or suffering, threats of such acts,harassment, coercion and arbitrary deprivationof liberty2. Examples include, sexual violence,trafficking, domestic violence, battery, dowryrelated violence, coerced or forced use ofcontraceptives, violence against LGBTI people,femicide, female infanticide, harmful practicesand certain forms of slavery and servitude.Gender equality refers to the equal rights,responsibilities and opportunities for people ofall sexes and gender identities. Equality doesnot mean that women and men will becomethe same but that their rights, responsibilitiesand opportunities will not depend on whetherthey are born male, female or outside thosebinary categories. Substantive or de factoequality, as required by CEDAW, does not meanguaranteeing women treatment that is identicalA human rights-based approach integrates internationalhuman rights standards and the principles of participation,accountability and non-discrimination to all developmentprogramming. For further information see: http://hrbaportal.organd UN OHCHR, Frequently Asked Questions on the Right toDevelopment, Fact Sheet No. 37, p.10.27CEDAW General recommendation No. 35 on gender-basedviolence against women, updating general recommendationNo. 19, CEDAW/C/GC/35, 26 July 2017.

I N T E G R AT I N G A G E N D E R P E R S P E C T I V E I N T O H U M A N R I G H T S I N V E S T I G AT I O N S G U I D A N C E A N D P R A C T I C E A D VA N C E V E R S I O Nto that of men in all circumstances. Rather,it recognizes that non-identical treatment ofwomen and men, based on biological as wellas socially and culturally constructed differencesbetween women and men, is required incertain circumstances to achieve equality ofopportunities and results. This is sometimesreferred to as affirmative action or temporarymeasures.3implies an analysis of the gender dimensions ofthe violations that includes the perspectives ofeveryone, including LGBTI, and the impacts ofthe human rights violations on all individuals andgroups, which can differ depending on their sexand gender. Focus is often placed on makingsure that women’s perspectives are reflected, aswomen and girls are generally among the moremarginalized population and their perspectivescan be made invisible by non-gendered analysis.Gender integration is part of the global strategyof the United Nations for promoting genderequality.Gender identity refers to a person’s deeplyfelt and experienced sense of their own gender,which may or may not correspond with thesex they were assigned at birth. It includesthe personal sense of the body and otherexpressions of gender, such as clothing, speechand mannerisms. Everyone has a genderidentity. Transgender or trans are umbrellaterms for people with a wide range of genderidentities and expressions who do not identifywith the sex they were assigned at birth. Atransgender person may identify with differentgender identities including man, woman,transman, transwoman, and with specificterms, including non-binary identities such ashijra, fa’afafine, two-spirit, among other terms.Cisgender is a term for people who identify withthe sex that they were assigned at birth.4Gender sensitivity. Being gender-sensitive oracting in a gender-sensitive manner means usingrespectful and non-discriminatory languageand taking into account the different situations,needs and attributes of women, men and others,in order to make sure behaviours, mindsets orprogrammes respect human rights of all persons.Gender stereotype is a generalized view orpreconception about attributes or characteristicsof what ought to be possessed by womenand men, or the roles that are or should beperformed by men and women.5Harmful practices are persistent behaviours,attitudes and practices that are based ondiscrimination and are typically justified byinvoking socio-cultural or religious customs,values, practices and traditions. Essentially,they tend to disproportionately affect womenand girls and are often manifested in formsof gender-based violence. Harmful practicesimpair the recognition, enjoyment and exerciseof human rights and are mostly perpetrated byprivate individuals.6Gender integration (also commonly referredto as “gender mainstreaming”) is the processof assessing the implications for women, menand other gender identities of any plannedaction, including legislation, policies orprogrammes, in all areas and at all levels. Itis often misunderstood as only referring to themonitoring of women’s human rights or genderbased violence. The integration of a genderperspective in human rights investigations3CEDAW General recommendation No. 28 – The CoreObligations of States Parties under Article 2 of theConvention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discriminationagainst Women, para 22, CEDAW/C/GC/28,16 December 2010.4See UN, Living free & equal, What states are doing totackle violence and discrimination against lesbian, gay,bisexual, transgender and intersex people (2016), availableat: FreeAndEqual.pdf.Sex is the sum of biological and physiologicalcharacteristics that typically define men andwomen, such as reproductive organs, hormonal85See nderStereotypes.aspx.6Joint general recommendation No. 31 of CEDAW andgeneral comment No. 18 of the CRC on harmful practices,CEDAW/C/GC/31-CRC/C/GC/18, 14 November 2014.

makeup, chromosomal patterns, hair-growthpatterns, distribution of muscle and fat, bodyshape, and skeletal structure. This publicationwill often refer to women, men and others toinclude binary and non-binary self-identificationsof sexual identity.taking advantage of a coercive environmentor such person’s or persons’ incapacity to givegenuine consent.8 Forms of sexual violenceinclude rape, attempted rape, sexual mutilation,forced sterilization, forced abortion, forcedprostitution, trafficking for the purpose ofsexual exploitation, child pornography, childprostitution, sexual slavery, forced marriage,forced pregnancy, forced nudity and forcedvirginity testing. The term “sexual and genderbased violence” (SGBV) is used to emphasizesexual violence from acts that are not of sexualnature, which are also included in the broaderterm gender-based violence (see GBV above).Sex-disaggregated data is data that iscollected and presented separately on womenand girls, men and boys. It contributes toreflect a more accurate picture of the roles, realsituations and general conditions of womenand men in every aspect of society, for instanceliteracy rates, education levels, businessownership, employment, wages, dependents,house and land ownership, loans, creditand debts. It is also important for data to bepresented on the human rights situation of otherindividuals that do not use or feel represented inbinary sex/gender categories.Sexual orientation refers to a person’sphysical, romantic and/or emotional attractiontowards other people. Everyone has a sexualorientation. Heterosexual people tend to beattracted to individuals of a different sex fromthemselves. Gay men and lesbian women tendto be attracted to individuals who are of thesame sex as themselves. Bisexual people maybe attracted to individuals who are of the sameor a different sex from themselves. There arealso other terms and concepts related to sexualorientation not included in this list.7Sexual violence is a form of gender-basedviolence. It encompasses acts of a sexualnature against one or more persons or thatcause such person or persons to engage in anact of a sexual nature by force, or by threat offorce or coercion, such as that caused by fearof violence, duress, detention, psychologicaloppression or abuse of power, against suchperson or persons or another person, or by7See also UN, Living free & equal, What states are doingto tackle violence and discrimination against lesbian, gay,bisexual, transgender and intersex people (2016), availableat: FreeAndEqual.pdf.89See International Criminal Court, Elements of Crimes.

IntroductionBACKGROUNDHuman rights monitoring and human rights investigations are a central aspectof the response provided by the United Nations (UN) to human rights violations,identifying the causes of human rights concerns and developing possiblesolutions, promoting accountability and deterring further human rights violations.Monitoring and investigative functions are a core aspect of the protectionmandate of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) anda function of most human rights field presences established under its mandate oras part of peace operations, mandated by the Security Council and overseen,managed and supported by OHCHR.9 These functions are also carried out byInternational Commissions of Inquiry (CoIs), Fact-finding Missions (FFMs) orother investigative bodies10. CoIs/FFMs are temporary bodies of a non-judicialnature, established by intergovernmental bodies,11 by the Secretary-General orthe High Commissioner for Human Rights with the task to investigate allegationsof violations of international human rights law (IHRL), international humanitarianlaw (IHL) or international criminal law, as relevant, and make recommendationsfor corrective actions based on their factual and legal findings. UN Human RightsMechanisms, such as certain Treaty Bodies, also carry-out inquiries as part oftheir mandate set in international human rights treaties if they have receivedreliable information containing well-founded indications of serious or systematicviolations.12 Regional human rights mechanisms of the African Commission onHuman and Peoples’ Rights or the Inter-American Commission on Human Rightsalso perform monitoring and investigative functions. Some non-governmentalorganizations or the civil society also carry out investigations, monitor and reporton human rights violations and concerns.OHCHR is mandated to contribute to the realization of all human rights for allpeople that includes non-discrimination on the basis of sex as a fundamentalprinciple of human rights law. On that basis OHCHR has adopted in 2011the OHCHR Gender Equality Policy which provides internal guidance onhow the Office aims to integrate a gender perspective and women’s humanrights througho

Gender analysis is an integral part of a human rights-based approach1, allowing one to see the many ways that gender affects human rights. As a starting point for gender integration, it can propose measures that will close the gender gap between international human rights standards and the everyday human rights situation on the ground.File Size: 679KB