United Nations Uniformed Gender Parity Strategy
Between 2007 and 2017, the number of uniformed female peacekeepers remained very low; the pace of change was also very slow:
- % of female military peacekeepers grew from 2% to 4.9%
- % of female police peacekeepers grew from 8% to 15%.
In 2015, UNSCR 2242 (2015) called for a collaborative effort to double the numbers of women in military and police contingents of UN peace operations over the next five years to 2020.
In response to UNSCR 2436 (2018) which reaffirmed this goal, the Uniformed Gender Parity Strategy (UGPS) 2018-2028, a UN DPO-led strategy developed with UN Women’s assistance to substantially increase the number of uniformed women peacekeepers over the next 10 years, was initiated by the UN Secretary-General.
UN DPO’s ambition for its UGPS is to reach the following numbers by 2028:
- 15% female military peacekeepers in troop contingents
- 20% female police in formed police units (FPU)
- 25% female military observers and staff officers
- 30% individual police officers.
However, unless there is a substantial acceleration in the pace of change by Troop and Police Contributing Countries (T/PCC), the United Nations will not reach even these modest goals.
UNSCR 2518 (2020), which focuses on improving the safety and security of peacekeepers, also calls upon Member States and the United Nations to ensure safe, enabling and gender-sensitive working environments for women in peacekeeping operations and to address threats and violence against them.
2018 United Nations Action for Peacekeeping Initiative
Action for Peacekeeping (A4P) is a United Nations Department of Peace Operations (UN DPO) lead initiative of the UN Secretary-General, designed to revitalize peacekeeping and reaffirm the UN system and member states’ commitment to it. The gender aspects of the initiative include increasing the numbers of women in peacekeeping and therefore increasing the United Nations’ effectiveness in fulfilling its mandates – evidence shows that greater numbers of women peacekeepers lead to more credible protection responses that meet the needs of all members of local communities.
The A4P initiative reiterates the United Nations’ global Women Peace and Security (WPS) commitments including UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325 (2000), which recognizes the unique impact of armed conflict on women and girls, acknowledges the contributions that women make to conflict prevention, peacekeeping, conflict resolution and peacebuilding, and highlights the importance of women’s equal and full participation as active agents, in peace and security.
Since September 2018, 152 Member States and four regional organizations have endorsed the Declaration of Shared Commitments, that calls for a collective commitment to implement the WPS agenda and its priorities:
- ensuring full, equal and meaningful participation of women in all stages of the peace process, and
- systematically integrating a gender perspective into all stages of analysis, planning, implementation and reporting.
These countries and regional organizations also re-committed to increasing the number of civilian and uniformed women in peacekeeping at all levels and in key positions.