Network of Associations of Local Authorities in South Eastern Europe (NALAS) Adopts Gender Equality Policy at Local Level

For the past two years, UN Women has provided NALAS expert and technical support to strengthen their institutional capacities in the field of gender equality and integrate gender aspects into local policy-making processes. As a result of this process and in line with NALAS 'strategic goals for promoting gender equality at the local level, NALAS has developed a document that adopts their policy positions on promoting gender equality. This document demonstrates their strong commitment and willingness to ensure that gender awareness and gender sensitivity are included and understood by all stakeholders and activities within the association of local authorities. The NALAS policy positions on gender equality promotion were formally adopted by the delegates of the NALAS General Assembly held in Pristina on April 14 and 15, 2016. On this occasion, NALAS President, Mr. Naim Ismaili said: "The acceptance of democracy is the first of NALAS's fundamental principles and values. We are open, multilingual, multiethnic and multicultural. We promote equal development of rural and urban municipalities, young and old, men and women. In this context, we understand gender differences between men and women as socially constructed, limiting the capacities of women and men and creating gender differences. This is a serious obstacle for individuals to practice their human rights and communities to fully develop and thrive. ”NALAS's policy positions include specific actions to achieve gender equality at the local level, emphasizing the collection and use of gender segregated data. It is expected that all institutions and organizations within the association will play an active role in the adoption and implementation of gender policies. To ensure effective implementation of these policies by all members, the NALAS Executive Committee Committee intends to adopt an implementation plan, and the NALAS Secretariat will report annually on progress made. In addition, at the NALAS General Assembly, in addition to adopting their political positions, NALAS also promoted the fifth edition of the Fiscal Decentralization Report for Southeast Europe. For the first time, a set of indicators was introduced in the data collection process and the report was expanded with a new chapter on introducing a gender perspective into the main policies and processes of fiscal decentralization. "NALAS has become one of the key partners of UN Women in the implementation of the regional project" Promoting Gender Responsive Policies in South East Europe and the Republic of Moldova ". Over the past two years, this significant partnership has resulted in a broad strengthening of the capacity of the network's working groups and strengthening of their role as promoters of gender equality and the adoption of gender responsive policies by local authorities in the region. UN Women project manager.