Gender equality in European Union


Equality between women and men is one of the European Union’s founding values, being included in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. It is expected that equality between women and men is included in all areas, including work, pay and education. Over the past few decades, the EU has notably worked for equal treatment legislation, integration of a gender perspective into all polices and specific measures for the advancement of women, defining the following areas as priorities:

  • Equal economic independence for women and men
  • Equal pay for work of equal value
  • Equality in decision-making
  • Dignity, integrity and ending gender-based violence
  • Promoting gender equality beyond the EU.

The European Commission launched the Strategic Engagement for Gender Equality 2016-2019, in order to foster key actions that work on these the priorities. It pays specific attention to the role of men, dismantling gender stereotypes and promoting non-discriminatory gender roles. The Strategic Engagement also takes into account specific needs of groups facing multiple disadvantages, e.g. single parents and older, migrant, Roma and disabled women.