Resolutions on Gender Equality in Co-operatives

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This document has been made available in electronic format
     by the International Co-operative Alliance ICA
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                     January 1996

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     Resolution on Gender Equality in Co-operatives
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             (Submitted by ICA Europe)

Gender equality is a global priority of the ICA.  A better balance between
female and male co-operators and employees would be a re-energizing force
and source of competitive advantage to co-operatives and improve their
image as democratic, people-oriented enterprises.  The ICA European Council
proposes that co-operatives commit themselves to active promotion of
equality between women and men.

A pre-requisite is that we accept that women and men are different and that
we respect their differences.  Mixed co-operative governance, reduced
gender segregation of employees at all levels, and appreciation of the
different priorities of women's and men's values, strengths and competence
all contribute to a positive development as well as to the improved
entrepreneurship and efficiency of co-operatives.

To improve such gender balance co-operatives are requested to set an action
plan which should include targets, with a clear idea of what should be
achieved and by when.

Women and men must have equal participation and job opportunities, the same
working conditions and equal pay for equal work, as well as equal training
and educational opportunities.  Progress in achieving objectives must be
monitored regularly to identify successes and shortfalls.

Shared influence and shared responsibilities between women and men are a
key to co-operative excellence.