Protecting the rights and interests of women and children - a priority in ASEAN

Together with the two pilars of ASEAN that is Political-Security and Economy, the Socio-Cultural pillar is highly regarded and paid attention to by Vietnam, notably in the category of “Protecting the rights and interests of women and children in ASEAN”.

Women delegates take part in the parade during the 8th Ao Dai Festival in Ho Chi Minh City, March 2022. (Source: VOV)

Promoting the rights of women and children

Numerous initiatives were taken in order to enforce and protect the rights of women and children by ASEAN, including the establishment of The ASEAN Commission on the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Women and Children (ACWC) on 7 April 2010 in Hanoi during the 16th ASEAN Summit.

In the following years, ACWC along with Vietnam has been active in enforcing the rights, welfare, development and participation of women and children in ASEAN.

In the cooperation field regarding the protection of women and children in ASEAN, Vietnam is one of the many nations that has hosted many activities and outstanding events, proving its capabilities as a proactive member of ASEAN.

Vietnam also actively implement cooperative activities in accordance with its membership obligations, and at the same time promote the integration of national priorities into regional activities, such as mainstreaming gender in areas, especially in labor and employment issues; elderly women's problems; social security for women, female migrant workers, and women's participation in political activities.

In June 2022, Vietnam has a number of activities within the framework of the ACWC Work Plan, such as holding an ACWC consultation seminar on the topic of “Driving partnerships towards a cohesive and adaptive future” that was organized by the Ministry of Labor - Invalids and Social Affairs in cooperation with the members of ASEAN and the ASEAN Secretariat. This seminar encouraged sharing of ACWC’s efforts in enforcing and protecting the rights of women and children in ASEAN.

Another initiative is the regional workshop on promoting inter-sectoral coordination mechanisms in prevention and control of child sexual abuse in ASEAN hosted by the Ministry of Labour - Invalids and Social Affairs in cooperation with the ASEAN Secretariat and UNICEF on 19 April via online and offline meetings.

Protecting the rights and interests of women and children in Vietnam

In Vietnam, the problems concerning gender equality, protection of women and children’s rights are written in the 1946 Constitution, affirming that Vietnamese women are equal to men.

In continuation, this has also been affirmed through the Constitutions that are written later on, notably the 2013 Constitution. This Constitution brought in many breakthroughs in laws that aimed toward gender equality and the protection of women and children’s rights. Moreover, everyone is equal before the law and no one is to be discriminated in political, civil, economic, cultural and social life.

An ACWC consultation seminar with the topic of “Driving partnerships towards a cohesive and adaptive future” was organised on 14 June 2022 in Hanoi. (Source: VNA)

In the National Strategy on gender equality 2011-2020, our nation has encouraged the participation of women in management and leadership roles, minifying the gap between gender inequality in fields such as the economy, labor and employment.

On that basis, Vietnam continues to implement the directions of the Party and State on the enforcement of gender equality goals, contributing to achieving sustainable development goals by 2030. On March 3, 2021, the Government promulgated the National Strategy on gender equality in the 2021-2030 period.

Regarding children’s rights, Vietnam is the first country in Asia and second in the world to approve the United Nations Convention on children’s rights in 20 February 1990.

Children’s rights in Vietnam are presented in the 1946 Constitution and also in the ones written in 1959, 1980, 1992 and 2013. The rights of children are also clarified in many laws, with the focus being the Law on Marriage and Family in 2014 and the Law on Children in 2016.

Vietnam, as a member of ASEAN and the focal agency in charge of ACWC’s activities, is always active in participating and taking responsibility for missions that aim to build ASEAN’s Socio-Cultural Community, especially in cooperation with the labor and social welfare of women and children.

(en.baoquocte.vn)