KWN Launches Report: Gender-based Discrimination and Labour in Kosovo

Pristina, On 11 Apr. The Kosovo Women’s Network (KWN) in close cooperation with the European Union (EU), Agency for Gender Equality and Ombudsperson Institution launched a ground-breaking new report on Gender-based Discrimination and Labour in Kosovo. The event also served to launch officially a regional initiative to address gender-based discrimination in labour in six Western Balkan countries, co-funded by the EU and Sweden/Sida and led by KWN.

“Gender equality is a fundamental value of the European Union. I strongly encourage the government to address the recommendations made in this report. They need to harmonize laws with the Acquis Communautaire, including the Gender Equality Acquis”, said Luigi Brusa, Head of Cooperation Section, and EU Office in Kosovo.
Edi Gusia, Chief Executive Officer of the Agency for Gender Equality in the Office of the Prime Minister while recognizing this report has stated its impact in institutional work.

“This research brings to our attention many important issues that also affect our work on a daily basis, which are: the collection of gender-disaggregated statistics in an improper manner and with an inconsistent methodology undermines the processes of law enforcement”, she stated.

Whereas, Edona Hajrullahu, Deputy Ombudsperson said that “while the Constitution and legal framework are based on best international standards, including the values and principles of equal treatment between genders, women and girls in Kosovo, continue to live between two realities: legal and factual”.

Read HERE the press release that KWN has issued for this case, where included are key findings of this research.

The main recommendations, presented by two co-authors of KWN, Nicole Farnsworth and Iliriana Banjska, included:

  • The importance of amending the Labour Law, Law on Gender Equality and Law on Protection from Discrimination to reduce overlap, clarify procedures and provide clearer sanctions for gender-based discrimination;
  • The need for all relevant institutions to collect and maintain better data disaggregated by the gender of plaintiffs and defendants in accordance with the Law on Gender Equality, as well as by the specific articles violated;
  • The need for more labour inspectors, particularly women, who are trained on recognizing and addressing gender-based discrimination at work;
  • The need for inter-sectoral collaboration among relevant institutions and civil society, including trade unions, in raising women and men’s awareness regarding what constitutes gender-based discrimination and how to report it; and supporting persons who have experienced such discrimination in seeking justice.

This initiative is co-funded by the European Union and Sweden/Sida.

Reports treating this issue have also been launched in North Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro, while launches are also expected in Albania and Bosnia and Herzegovina, as part of a regional initiative to address such discrimination in six Western Balkan countries.