In this step, you will consider how to implement your policy given gender differences.
Reflect on your analysis from previous steps
Questions of particular concern for this step are:
- What are some key inequalities between groups of women and men in terms of their resources and access to resources (work, money, power, security, education, mobility, time, health and wellbeing and so on). These might differ at different times and stages of people’s lives.
- What obstacles are there to participation by groups of women (or men or gender-diverse people)? For example, factors relating to location, hours, cost and family support may deter women from participating in and completing a program. It may be easier for women to use services if children are also welcome. Don’t disregard safety: services and policy should be designed so that women can access them safely.
It is important to keep in mind the division of unpaid work by gender, and gendered expectations for women in their private lives (e.g. the family or whanau). It is also important to consider that work and leadership roles are commonly organised by gender as well, which can have implications for decision-making and access to resources. Gender differences play out at different levels of social structures and it is important to be aware of these.
How will you effectively include gender differences in your implementation?
Consider the inequalities and obstacles above and how these might be specifically addressed. For instance, when it comes to informing groups, what media will be most effective for reaching a broad variety of people within the target audiences and by gender?
Who are the key influencers in your target group(s)? Sometimes the most effective communication is for government to identify the key influencers and access their help to get the messages out.
Use gender-inclusive language, symbols and examples in all materials. Here is a link to a University of Otago resource that describes gender-inclusive language.
Visual signals are a powerful way to demonstrate and signal that programmes are intended to be inclusive. For instance, the Canterbury Women in Construction Working Group promoted women’s visibility in the Christchurch rebuild. This included profiling women in construction and highlighting women as a source of labour in the rebuild. Media stories about women in the rebuild celebrated their successes. There were also changes in the way recruiters advertised jobs to make it explicit that women are welcome to apply for construction jobs (e.g. by including phrases like “women are welcome to apply”).
Consider whether separate implementation actions are needed for different groups by gender
If you are implementing a policy that allocates resources, are you making sure that these resources are being shared as you envisaged between groups of women? Are separate delivery mechanisms needed or can a mainstream approach work?
Do diverse groups within the target audience access information in the same ways? Are separate communications, services or materials, necessary to reach different groups of women?
If you are delivering or contracting a service, is training available to those delivering services to ensure they are sensitive to needs and expectations by gender? Do service providers reflect the diversity of the groups they are serving?
Example: Rebuilding Christchurch after the earthquakes
The Canterbury Women in Construction Working Group brought gender into implementation by promoting women’s visibility in the rebuild. This included profiling women in construction and highlighting women as a source of labour in the rebuild. Media stories about women in the rebuild celebrated their successes. There were also changes in the way recruiters advertised jobs to make it explicit that women were welcome to apply for construction jobs (e.g, by including phrases like “women are welcome to apply”).
Completing Step 5
As you consider your responses to the questions above, you may want to capture your thinking in the downloadable worksheet below.