NWCI Presentation to pre-meeting of the Women’s Parliamentary Caucus on Gender Budgeting in Ireland
Published: Tuesday, June 13, 2017
Ireland’s budgetary process has long faced criticism for its opaque and complex nature. Recent reform aimed at providing for greater parliamentary participation and transparency are to be welcomed. In order to achieve equality, we must act purposefully. It requires weighing the benefits and costs of policies that would or could promote women’s equality AND THEN, importantly, taking action in response to that evaluation. It requires two types action: dedicating public expenditure to EXPLICIT gender equality objectives and women’s advancement, establishing childcare provision as a form of capital and social infrastructure, or cervical cancer treatment. AND expenditures that can be seen as contributing to gender equality more broadly, such as gender-sensitive pension reform, cardiac health services, changes to taxation and some forms of social transfers, investments in labour market activation initiatives. The adoption and implementation of gender and equality budgeting processes aligns neatly with these developments. Gender budgeting does not require a new or additional budget. Rather, put simply, gender budgeting involves two key elements: 1. Changes to fiscal policy or the structure of fiscal policies and 2. Administrative changes to expenditure tracking and monitoring systems. According to leading international expert Janet Stotsky, the most successful efforts encompass both.