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Gender Equality Laws

Here you will find a list of national legislation that relate to gender equality.

Upcoming sections: Summaries on the laws and brief analysis of its compliance with CEDAW in principles and substance.


Information request

We are always seeking to update our collection of gender equality laws from around the globe. Should you have information on other such laws that you wish to share with others, write to us at: <>. We hope you will be able to supply us with these or point us to any resources. An English version is preferred, but please do send versions in your original language or any other language as well.

You can also help us in In addition we would like to know:

  1. Are there any gender equality laws in your country, especially those enacted since your country has ratified CEDAW? This also includes amendments to laws to reflect standards of equality and non-discrimination based on CEDAW.

  2. What was the background/context of the enactment of the law?

  3. What are the features in the law

  4. Please supply any critique or commentary of these laws. We would welcome your personal opinion or any papers that you are aware of.

  5. Have there been any cases where these laws have been used to claim equality for women?

  6. Are you aware of any model legislation for gender equality laws?

List of laws

Law on an Equal Gender Society 2004

Sex Discrimination Act 1984 *pdf

Federal Constitutional Law Article 7
Equal Treatment Act 1979 (amended in 1982, 1985, 1990, 1993, 2001) (Handbook by the National Equality Body)

Act of February 25, 2003 pertaining to the combat of discrimination and to the amendment of the Act of February 15, 1993 pertaining to the foundation of a centre for equal opportunities and opposition to racism

List of specific gender equality proclamations
Comments to existing legislation (Spanish only)

Bosnia and Herzegovina
Law on Gender Equality in Bosnia and Herzegovina 2003

Protection against Discrimination Act 2004
Act on Equal Opportunities for Women and Men 2002

Equality provision in the Constitution
Canadian Human Rights Act

Law of the People’s Republic of China on the Protection of Rights and Interests of Women (adopted 2005)

Por la Cual se Dictan Normas Sobre Igualdad de Oportunidades para las Mujeres (Norms on the Equality of Opportunity for Women) 2003

Anti Discrimination Act
Gender Equality Act 2003

Gender Equality (Consolidation) Act 2002

Gender Equality Act 2004

European Union

Directive 76/207/EEC on the implementation of the principle of equal treatment for men and women as regards access to employment, vocational training and promotion, and working conditions

Directive 2004/113/EC implementing the principle of equal treatment between men and women in the access to and supply of goods and services

Directive 2006/54/EC on the implementation of the principle of equal opportunities and equal treatment of men and women in matters of employment and occupation

European Union Framework for non discrimination and Equality (Directive 2000/43/EC and 2000/78/EC)

Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, Article 20-24

Law on Gender Equality , Article 141 of the Consolidated text of Treaty Establishing European Union and the European Economic Community Treaty

More information on EU Gender Equality Laws from the European Women’s Lobby website

Article 38 Constitution of Fiji

Act on Equality between Women and Men (8.8.1986/609)

General Act on Equal Treatment 2006

Prevention of Discrimination Act *pdf

Ley de Igualdad de Oportunidades para la Mujer (Law on Equality of Opportunities for Woman) 2000 *pdf

Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China (HKSAR)
Sex Discrimination Ordinance

Act CXXV of 2003, on Equal Treatment and Promotion of Equal Opportunities

The Act on the Equal Status and Equal Rights of Women and Men
The Act on Maternity/Paternity Leave and Parental Leave, No. 95/2000, as amended by Act No. 90/2004 [unofficial translation]

Employment Equality Act 1998
Equality Act 2004
Equal Status Act 2000

Employment Equal Opportunities Law 1988
Equal Pay Law 1996

Basic Law for Gender Equal Society 1999

Gender Discrimination Prevention and Relief Act, 1999
Equal Employment Act 1987 (EEA)

Kosovo (UN administered territory)
Law on Gender Equality in Kosovo 2004

Kyrgyzstan Republic
Law on the Basics of State Guarantees of Gender Equality 2003

Law on the Protection and Development of Women 2004

Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Equal Opportunities 1998

Equality for Men and Women Act 1 of 2003

Law on Ensuring Equal Opportunities for Women and Men, No. 5-XVI of 9 February 2006 *word format

An Act to Amend Some Nepal Acts for Maintaining Gender Equality, 2063 (2006)

Equal Treatment Act 2004

Ley de Igualdad de Derechos y Oportunidades (Law on Equality of Rights and Opportunities)

Northern Ireland
All Sex Discrimination legislations
All Equal Pay legislations

The Act Relating to Gender Equality (the Gender Equality Act)
The Act on Prohibition of Discrimination Based on Ethnicity, Religion, etc. (the Anti-Discrimination Act) [unofficial translation]
The Act on the Equality and Anti-Discrimination Ombud and the Equality and Anti-Discrimination Tribunal (The Anti-Discrimination Ombud Act)

Ley No 1/92. De la Reforma Parcial del Código Civil (Law No 1/92 of the Partial Reform of the Civil Code)

An Act Strengthening The Prohibition On Discrimination Against Women With Respect To Terms And Conditions Of Employment, Amending For The Purpose Article One Hundred Thirty-Five Of The Labor Code, As Amended

An Act Promoting The Integration Of Women As Full And Equal Partners Of Men In Development And Nation Building And For Other Purposes

Draft Magna Carta on Women

Puerto Rico
Ley para Garantizar la Igualdad de Opportunidades en el Empleo por Genero e poner sanciones (Law to Guarantee Equality of Opportunity in Employment) 1999

Law on Equal Opportunities between Women and Men 2002

Scotland : Gender Equality Duty

Women’s Charter 1961 (amended 1967, 1969, 1973, 1975, 1980, 1993, 1994, 1996, 2001)

Equal Treatment in Certain Areas and Protection against Discrimination, 2004

Por el que se Crea el Observatorio de la Igualdad de Oportunidades entre Mujeres y Hombres 2000
Constitutional Act 3/2007 of 22 March for effective equality between women and men (Organic Act of 3/2007)

Act on Equal Treatment in Certain Areas and Protection against Discrimination, amending and supplementing certain other laws (Antidiscrimination Act)

Act on Equal Opportunities for Women and Men 2002
Act for Implementing Equal Treatment 2004

South Africa
Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act, 2000 (No. 4 of 2000)
Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Amendment Act, 2002 (Act 52 of 2002)
Employment Equity Act 1998

South Korea
Gender Discrimination Prevention and Relief Act 1999

Discrimination Act 2008
The Equal Opportunities Act ( Act on Equality between Women and Men) *pdf
The Prohibition of Discrimination Act *word format
Equal Treatment of Students at Universities Act *word format
Act on the prohibition of discrimination and other degrading treatment of children and pupils *word format

Federal Act on Gender Equality 1995

Gender Equity Education Act (2004)
Gender Equality in Employment Act

Law of the Republic of Tajikistan On State guarantees of equal rights for men and women and equal opportunities in the exercise of such rights.

2007 Constitution, part 2 Section 30 on Equality and Part 6 Section 80, 82, 87,97 on implementing human rights and non discrimination and equality between men and women
Summary of draft bill

United Kingdom
Equality Act 2006 replaces the Sex Discrimination Act 1975
Comprehensive Equality Bill
Human Rights Act 1998

On State Guarantees of Equal Rights and Opportunities For Men and Women 2005
Law Of Ukraine On Equal Rights And Opportunities For Women And Men

Constitution of 2001, Article 52 and 63
Law on Gender Equality


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