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Building an Inclusive Mexico

Policies and Good Governance for Gender Equality

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Mexico is slowly advancing on the path to gender equality. Many public policies aimed at empowering women are now in place: over the past two decades, Mexico has increased investments in girls' education, greatly expanded childcare and preschool, improved gender mainstreaming in government, and ensured that female politicians are well-represented at the ballot box. Yet, despite these efforts, many Mexican women still do not feel the effects of these policies at home, at work, or in public spaces. Large gender gaps remain in educational outcomes, participation in the labour market, pay, informality status, and hours of unpaid childcare and housework. “Unlocking Mexico’s full potential,” as Mexico's National Development Plan prescribes, will depend crucially on how well Mexico closes existing gender gaps in political, social and economic life and promotes real social change. Mexico must continue to invest in social and labour market policies that empower women, and reinvigorate efforts to reduce inequalities in education, labour force participation, job quality, unpaid work, and leadership. This will require embedding gender equality objectives in all public policies and budgets, across all levels of government, and ensuring the effective implementation, enforcement, and evaluation of policies and laws to achieve inclusive outcomes.

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Gender, growth and government: Reaching Mexico's potential

This chapter presents an overview of Building an Inclusive Mexico: Policies and Good Governance for Gender Equality. This report finds that Mexico has a long way to go on the road to gender equality. Mexican women's economic outcomes, including labour force participation, continue to lag behind those in most other OECD countries. Mexico's adolescent pregnancy rate remains high, and the share of young women not in employment, education, or training is nearly four times the share for young men. Mexican women continue to suffer from high levels of violence and face pervasive gender stereotyping. Despite these challenges, however, there is cause for optimism. Mexico is building an advanced legal and policy framework aimed at achieving substantive gender equality, has seriously committed to gender mainstreaming in government, and has become a global leader in the representation of women in the national legislature, in part due to quotas in the electoral process. Mexico has made good progress in social policies, as well, particularly in early childhood education and care, and has committed to eradicating gender-based violence. These are crucial improvements, but major advances are still needed to mainstream gender in policy design, implementation, enforcement, and evaluation. With strong mandates and resources, Mexico can ensure that policies’ intended effects are fully realised. Chapter 1 closes with a summary of policy recommendations aimed at promoting gender equality in Mexico.

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