Gender Equality in Argentina
Flag of Argentina
|Population (in Mil.)||40.76|
|Gross Domestic Product (In USD Billions - WB)||446.04|
|Sex Ratio (m/f)||0.97|
|Life Expectancy Ratio (f/m)||1.105|
|Income Ratio (f/m)||0.51|
|Literacy Ratio (f/m)||1|
|Tertiary Enrolment Ratio (f/m)||1.51|
|Women in Parliament (in %)||35|
|Human Development Index||45/169|
|Social Institutions and Gender Index||1/86|
|Gender Inequality Index||60/138|
|Gender Equity Index||31/157|
|Women’s Economic Opportunity Index||47/113|
|Global Gender Gap Index||29/134|
|More information on variables|
Argentina is a country rich in natural resources and is one of South America’s largest economies. The country experienced a severe economic crisis in 2001, which left half of the population living in poverty and despite some improvement since 2003 many Argentines still await the benefits of the economic upturn. Since the 2009 recession there is a risk of exacerbating an already high inflation due to the government’s reliance on expansionary fiscal and monetary policies. In 2007, Argentina elected its first female president, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, who was re-elected for a second term in the October 2011 presidential elections. The World Bank classifies Argentina as an upper middle income country.
According to the 2011 World Economic Forum Global Gender Gap report, women and girls in Argentina have achieved gender parity in primary, secondary and tertiary education. However, there is a gender gap in labour force participation, with only 58% of women participating in the labour force, compared to 82% of men. In 2010, the Committee on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women commended Argentina for its gender-sensitive response to the economic crisis and the introduction of the comprehensive law on violence against women. However, the Committee also noted that discrimination against particularly disadvantaged groups of women remains a problem and that more effort is required to provide women with access to justice in the legal system.
The Argentine Constitution (amended in 1994) guarantees the equality of both genders and prohibits any form of discrimination against women. The National Council for Women was established in 1992 to promote women’s participation in society and ensure that the international treaties ratified by Argentina (in particular the CEDAW and its Optional Protocol, which Argentina ratified in 2007) are applied in practice. % Argentina ratified the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) in 1985, and the Optional Protocol on violence against women in 2007.
In 2011, the Human Development Index for Argentina was 0.797, placing the country at 45 out of 187 countries. For the Gender Inequality Index, based on 2011 data, Argentina received a score of 0.372, placing it at 67 out of 146 countries. The World Economic Forum ranked Argentina 28 out of 135 countries in its 2011 Global Gender Gap Report, with a score of 0.7236 where 0 represents inequality and 1 represents equality.
Discriminatory Family Code
The statutory minimum age at which people can marry is 18 for women and men. A 2004 United Nations report estimated that in 2001, the most recent year for which data is available, 10.6% of girls between 15 and 19 years of age were married, divorced or widowed. Polygamy is not practised in Argentina. The law on civil marriages guarantees equality between the spouses, particularly in relation to parental authority, both during the marriage and when it is dissolved. Maintaining the family following divorce is difficult for women in that a large number of men do not meet their obligation to make child support payments. In 2001, the government passed legislation to tackle this problem more effectively. There is no discrimination in respect of inheritance; women and girls as widows and daughters are fully entitled to inherit on the same basis as men and boys.
Restricted Physical Integrity
In March 2009, Argentina enacted a new law to prevent, sanction, and eradicate violence against women that for the first time recognized violence against women as gender violence. This comprehensive law applies throughout the entire country and requires collaboration across government agencies of all jurisdictions. The law recognizes five types of violence: physical, psychological, sexual, economic, and symbolic, and covers women’s interpersonal relationships at all levels, from domestic to institutional. These activities will be coordinated and administered through the Consejo Nacional de la Mujer (National Council of Women). The law establishes a framework for additional laws to set new penalties for gender-based violent crimes.
In 1999, legislation was passed on offences that violate sexual integrity, introducing the concept of sexual abuse and a broader definition of rape. However, domestic violence is a misdemeanor offense that is prosecuted in civil, not criminal court. The need to provide proof of a sexual injury resulting from the rape is often seen as an obstacle for victims. Women’s rights advocates report that police, hospital, and court attitudes towards victims of sexual violence often revictimized the individual. The Ministry of Justice National Crime Policy Office estimates that only one-third of sexual violence crimes are reported and only 10% result in convictions. In September 2008 the Supreme Court inaugurated the Office of Domestic Violence in an attempt to address these concerns.
Similarly, despite the development of a legal framework designed to address the problem of domestic violence, it also remains quite common (although few reliable statistics are available). Legislation on protection from domestic violence was passed in 1994, and now applies in all 23 states. This legislation offers those who have suffered domestic violence protection, civil redress, welfare and psychological support and the removal of the violent spouse from the marital home. When violence involves a crime against sexual integrity, it is punishable by a sentence of up to 20 years in prison. Despite its frequency, domestic violence is not socially accepted. Over 96 % of respondents to a 2006 survey answered that it was never justifiable for a man to beat his wife.
There is no evidence to suggest that female genital mutilation is practised in Argentina.
Despite its strong maternity protections, there are some informal barriers to adequate gender-based care in Argentina, particularly in regards to access to reproductive health care services. Some women are given inaccurate information about contraception by their doctors, while others have their access restricted by their partners. While sterilization is a common modern method of birth control in many Latin American countries, it was illegal in Argentina until 2006, and even today many public hospitals require that women already have three or more children, are 35 years of age, and have the consent of their spouse. Since 2003, the government has undertaken numerous campaigns to broaden the knowledge of and access to contraceptives and other reproductive health services, particularly among poor women. Nevertheless, disparities remain, with poorer and less educated women reporting lower rates of use and knowledge. The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs reported in 2011 that abortion is only permitted in Argentina to save a woman’s life. Otherwise it is illegal, although it is estimated that between 300,000 and 500,000 clandestine abortions take place every year. Further, abortion-related complications are the second leading cause of both pathology-related hospitalizations of women and of maternal deaths.
The 2010 female-to-male ratio for primary school enrollment is 0.99 and for secondary school enrollment it is 1.12. Despite having reached parity in education, Argentina faces the issue of child labour, which remains common: in 2004, a government survey estimated that there were 450.000 children working. While the law protects children from exploitation in the workplace, child labour persists, especially in rural areas. According to a 2010 ILO study, boys are more likely than girls to be in employment, and the gender gap increases with age. 2004 Figures indicate that out of all children aged 7-14 years, 15.7% of boys engage in economic activity versus 9.8% of girls. However, girls spend on average 23.3 hours per week in economic activity when boys spend 22.7 hours per week. The male/female sex ratio for the total population in 2012 is 0.97. There is no evidence to suggest that Argentina is a country of concern in relation to missing women.
Restricted Resources and Entitlements
Although the Argentine law views women as equal in regard to access to land, access to property other than land, and access to bank loans, in practice they often face economic discrimination. Women continue to hold a disproportionate number of low paying jobs concentrated in economic sectors such as domestic work, personal services and other small and medium-sized enterprises. This horizontal and vertical occupational segregation persists despite the fact that more women comprise nearly 57% of enrollees at higher levels of education. For example, many women work on small farms but have only limited access to land and are very vulnerable to poverty. To resolve this issue, the government has initiated several projects to benefit women living in rural communities and to foster equal treatment and opportunities in the workplace for men and women nationwide.
Restricted Civil Liberties
The law guarantees freedom of movement for women and there are no restrictions on this freedom in practice. Freedom of expression is guaranteed by law and is generally respected. The constitution also guarantees freedom of religion, although the Jewish community in Argentina is often discriminated against. The October 2009 bill contains some provisions that limit freedom of expression, such as “the creation of a politically-appointed regulatory body”. Regarding the representation of women in the media, a new Observatory has been established to monitor symbolic and media violence against women and other forms of discrimination.
Due to the official decree that one-third of the members of both houses of congress must be women (a goal achieved through balanced election slates), women are well-represented in Argentina’s bi-cameral parliament. Following elections in June 2009, women hold 124 out of 328 seats, or 37.8%. In addition, following the elections in October 2007, Argentina elected a woman as its President for the first time. At the provincial level, women comprise 27% of legislators, although the level varies greatly between provinces, from a low of 4% to a high of 48%. In general few women hold few positions of authority in local and provincial governments. According to results from a 2006 survey, 67.8% of respondents disagreed or disagreed strongly with the statement, “On the whole, men make better political leaders than women do.” Similarly, a 2007 Pew survey found that 68% of those polls viewed men and women equally as political leaders. 80% of those surveyed in 2006 believed that giving women equal rights was an essential characteristic of democracy.
Women in Argentina receive ninety days of maternity leave at 100% of their wages, but those wages are paid through an employer-funded system. Survey questions reveal a desire among women for policies that help them balance their domestic and professional responsibilities. In 2006, 75.6% of respondents agreed with the statement, “A working mother can establish just as warm and secure a relationship with her children as a mother who does not work.” However, 65.8% also agreed or agreed strongly with the statement, “Being a housewife is just as fulfilling as working for pay.” 60% disagreed with the statement, “When jobs are scarce, men should have more right to a job than women.”
- ↑ BBC News, 12 October 2011, Argentina country profile, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/country_profiles/1192478.stm (accessed 24 October 2011)
- ↑ Central Intelligence Agency (2011) The World Fact Book: Argentina, available at https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/ar.html, accessed 24 October 2011.
- ↑ See reference 1
- ↑ World Bank (n.d.) Online data: Argentina, available at http://data.worldbank.org/country/argentina, accessed 24 October 2011
- ↑ CEDAW (2010), Concluding observations of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, CEDAW/C/ARG/CO/6, New York, NY.
- ↑ The Constitution of the Argentine Nation, adopted 22 August 1994.
- ↑ United Nations Treaty Collection (UNTC) (2010): Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination Against Women, countries ratified. - CEDAW: http://treaties.un.org/Pages/ViewDetails.aspx?src=TREATY&mtdsg_no=IV-8&chapter=4&lang=en (accessed 24 October 2011); - Optional Protocol: http://treaties.un.org/Pages/ViewDetails.aspx?src=TREATY&mtdsg_no=IV-8-b&chapter=4&lang=en (accessed 24 October 2011)
- ↑ United Nations Development Programme (2011) Human Development Report 2011, available at http://hdr.undp.org/en/media/HDR_2011_EN_Complete.pdf, accessed 29 February 2012 p.127
- ↑ See reference 8
- ↑ World Economic Forum (2011) The Global Gender Gap Report 2011, available at http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_GenderGap_Report_2011.pdf, accessed 2 March 2012 p.11
- ↑ Civil Code, Article 166, inciso 5.
- ↑ UN (United Nations) (2004), World Fertility Report 2003, UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division, New York, NY, p. 10; UN (2008), World Marriage Data 2008, UN Population Division, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Fertility and Family Planning Section: New York, NY
- ↑ CEDAW (2002), Consideration of Reports Submitted by States Parties Under Article 18 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women: Argentina, Fifth Periodic Report of States Parties, CEDAW/C/ARG/5, CEDAW, New York, NY, p. 64.
- ↑ Civil Code, Article 3288 – 3570,
- ↑ Law No. 26,485. Comprehensive Protection Act to Prevent, Punish and Eradicate Violence Against Women in Areas Where they Develop their Relationships, enacted 11 March 2009.
- ↑ US Department of State (2011), 2010 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Argentina, US Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, Washington, DC.
- ↑ Law No. 25.087 modifying the Criminal Code
- ↑ See reference 16
- ↑ See reference 16
- ↑ See reference 16
- ↑ Law No. 24,417. Protection Against Family Violence Law; CEDAW (2008), Considerations of Reports Submitted by States Parties Under Article 18 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women: Argentina, Sixth Periodic Report of States Parties, p. 24; Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (CEPAL) (2009) Questionnaire on the Implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action (1995) + 15: Argentina, p. 10.
- ↑ See reference 16
- ↑ World Values Survey (2006), Selected Country/Sample: Argentina: Question V208.
- ↑ CEPAL 2009, p. 8; Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) (2004), Supplementary information on Argentina Scheduled for review during the CEDAW’s 31st Session, p. 2; Human Rights Watch (HRW) (2005), Decisions Denied: Access to Contraceptives and Abortion in Argentina, p. 2.
- ↑ CRR (Center For Reproductive Rights) (2002), Supplementary Information On Argentina Scheduled For Review By CEDAW In August 2002, CRR: NEW YORK, NY.
- ↑ UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (2011), World Abortion Policies 2011, available online: http://www.un.org/esa/population/publications/2011abortion/2011abortionwallchart.html (accessed 1 December 2011)
- ↑ C See reference 27; p. 4-5;, CRR (Center for Reproductive Rights) (2004), Supplementary information on Argentina Scheduled for review during the CEDAW’s 31st Session, CRR: New York, NY, p. 3-4.
- ↑ World Economic Forum (2010) Global Gender Gap Report 2010, Available at http://www.weforum.org/pdf/gendergap/report2010.pdf, accessed 24 October 2011
- ↑ See reference 16
- ↑ ILO (2010), Trends in children’s employment and child labour in the Latin America and Caribbean region, Country report for Argentina, available online, http://www.ucw-project.org/attachment/Argentina_trends20110420_150205.pdf (accessed 25 October 2011),
- ↑ Understanding Children’s Work Programme (2005), Inter-agency research cooperation initiative involving the International Labour Organisation (ILO), UNICEF and the World Bank, EANNA, Encuesta Sobre Actividades de Ninos, Ninas y Adolescentes, 2004, available online, http://www.ucw-project.org/pages/interactive-map.aspx (accessed 25 October 2011)
- ↑ Central Intelligence Agency (2012) The World Fact Book: Sex Ratio, available at https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/fields/2018.html, accessed 29 February 2012 US Department of State (2011), 2010 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Argentina, US Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, Washington, DC.
- ↑ Reference 16; CEPAL (Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean) (2009) Questionnaire on the Implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action (1995) + 15: Argentina, CEPAL: Santiago, Chile p. 14.
- ↑ CEPAL (Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean) (2009) Questionnaire on the Implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action (1995) + 15: Argentina, CEPAL: Santiago, Chile, p. 18
- ↑ CEDAW (2000), Considerations of Reports Submitted by States Parties Under Article 18 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women: Argentina, Fourth Periodic Report of States Parties, p. 83, 105-106; State Dept. 2010.
- ↑ Reference 16
- ↑ See reference 37
- ↑ Reference 38
- ↑ ECLAC (Economic Commission for Latin America and the Carribean) (2009), Review of the Implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action and the outcome of the 23rd Special Session of the General Assembly in Latin American and Carribean countries, LC/L. 3175.
- ↑ Decree No. 1246/00; CEDAW (2002), Consideration of Reports Submitted by States Parties Under Article 18 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women: Argentina, Fifth Periodic Report of States Parties, CEDAW/C/ARG/5, CEDAW, New York, NY, p. 29; US Department of State (2011), 2010 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Argentina, US Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, Washington, DC.
- ↑ Inter-Parliamentary Union (2010), Women in Parliament: All Countries on National Parliaments. Inter-Parliamentary Union, Geneva, http://www.ipu.org/wmn-e/classif.htm.
- ↑ CEDAW (2008), Considerations of Reports Submitted by States Parties Under Article 18 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women: Argentina, Sixth Periodic Report of States Parties, CEDAW/C/ARG/6, New York, NY, p. 38.
- ↑ Reference 42, p. 39.
- ↑ Equipo Latinoamericano de Justicia y Genero (ELA) (2008), Temas prioritarios a considerar en la evaluación del VI Informe de la Republica Argentina sobre el cumplimiento de la CEDAW (2004-2007), p. 8.
- ↑ World Values Survey (2006), Selected Country/Sample: Argentina, World Values Survey, Available http://worldvaluessurvey.org, Accessed 11 January 2010., Question V61.
- ↑ Pew Research Center, Global Attitudes Project: Spring 2007 Survey: Question Q.43.
- ↑ World Values Survey (2006), Selected Country/Sample: Argentina, World Values Survey, Available http://worldvaluessurvey.org, Accessed 11 January 2010., Question V161.
- ↑ International Labour Organization (2009), Database of Conditions and Work Employment Laws.
- ↑ World Bank (2009), Women’s Economic Opportunity Index: Indicator 4.4.
- ↑ Reference 45, Question V60.
- ↑ Reference 45, Question V44.
The Women, Business and the Law
Where are laws equal for men and women?
The Women, Business and the Law report presents indicators based on laws and regulations affecting women's prospects as entrepreneurs and employees. Several of these indicators draw on the Gender Law Library, a collection of over 2,000 legal provisions impacting women's economic status. This report does not seek to judge or rank countries, but to provide information to inform discussions about women’s economic rights. Women, Business and the Law provides data covering 6 areas: accessing institutions,using property, getting a job, providing incentives to work, building credit, and going to court.Read more about the methodology.
For detailed information on Argentina, please visit the Women, Business and
the Law Argentina page.
The FAO Gender and Land Rights Database
The FAO Gender and Land Rights Database contains country level information on social, economic, political and cultural issues related to the gender inequalities embedded in those rights. Disparity on land access is one of the major causes for social and gender inequalities in rural areas, and it jeopardizes, as a consequence, rural food security as well as the wellbeing of individuals and families.
The Database offers information on the 6 following Categories:
- National legal frame
- International treaties and conventions
- Customary law
- Land tenure and related Institutions
- Civil society organizations
- Selected Land Related Statistics
For detailed information on Argentina, please visit the report on Argentina in the FAO Gender and Land Rights Database.