The Council of Europe’s work in the fields of human rights and gender equality has resulted in Gender equality and women's rights, Council of Europe standards, aimed at achieving the advancement and empowerment of women and realising of gender equality in Council of Europe member states and beyond.
The Council of Europe Gender Equality Strategy 2014-2017 builds upon the vast legal and policy acquis of the Council of Europe in this area and pushes towards these goals by supporting the implementation of existing standards through five strategic objectives:
- combating gender stereotypes and sexism;
- preventing and combating violence against women;
- guaranteeing equal access of women to justice;
- achieving balanced participation of women and men in political and public decision-making;
- achieving gender mainstreaming in all policies and measures.
The campaign works with the Gender Equality Unit on combating sexist hate speech.
In the survey about young people and online hate speech carried out in 2015, women are one of the top three target groups of hate speech encountered by the respondents.
"Sexist hate speech" against women has also been referred to as “sexualised hate speech”, “cyber gender harassment” and “cyber‐sexism”. However it is referred to, it has devastating effects, especially on young women, and affects society’s quest to achieve gender equality. Sexist forms of hate speech are also direct manifestations of violence against women and girls, which remains the most pronounced expression of the uneven balance of power between women and men, one of the root causes of discrimination against women.
A seminar on sexist hate speech was co-organised by the Youth Department and the Gender Equality Unit in February 2016 in Strasbourg. For the report of the seminar and the concept note on sexist hate speech visit the site.
Gender Equality in the Programme of the Youth Department
In the youth sector of the Council of Europe, working with young people on issues relating to gender and gender equality, understood as the equality of all genders, is a central part of human rights education, defined as educational programmes and activities that focus on promoting equality in human dignity. The issue is addressed in the manual Compass and specifically in the manual on gender-based violence affecting young people, Gender Matters.
The Youth Department organised a seminar entilted "gender matters" in June 2016 with the objective of further mainstreaming gender equality in its activities and policies and those of the Council of Europe and its partners.