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Briefing of Ministers and High-Level Authorities of Machineries for the Advancement of Women in Latin America and the Caribbean: The response to the COVID-19 pandemic crisis from a gender perspective

8 April 2020|Event

In Latin America and the Caribbean, ministries and machineries for the advancement of women are designing and implementing initiatives and policies to address the gender dimensions of the COVID-19 pandemic. Contingency plans and protocols are being implemented in several countries, aiming to cope with the saturation of health systems and social lockdown/isolation. At the meeting, an initial mapping will be presented of the initiatives announced to address gender dimensions in the responses to the pandemic in the Latin American and Caribbean countries. This mapping will be updated with the progress presented at the meeting and will become an updated digital repository available for the countries to consult.


1. Analyse the different economic and social scenarios of the current crisis and its differentiated impacts on women in the short, medium and long terms. 

2. Share information on the main initiatives that the governments of the region are carrying forward, with special consideration for the needs of women and gender inequalities in the framework of the current crisis. 

3. Analyse the available data on a possible increase in violence against women and femicide/feminicide, and discuss prevention and response measures in relation to COVID-19. 

4. Promote regional, subregional and bilateral cooperation initiatives that support a coordinated response to the coronavirus crisis, by incorporating lessons learned from the region and other parts of the world. 

  • Virtual meeting for Latin American countries (in Spanish): 11 a.m. Santiago (Chile) time. 
  • Virtual meeting for Caribbean countries (in English): 4:30 p.m. Santiago (Chile) time. 

8 Apr 2020

  • Welcome remarks

    11:00 to 11:15
    • Alicia Bárcena, Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) 
    • María-Noel Vaeza, Regional Director for the Americas and the Caribbean of the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN-Women) 
    • Carolina Cuevas, Minister of Women’s Affairs and Gender Equity of Chile, in her capacity as Chair of the Presiding Officers of the Regional Conference on Women in Latin America and the Caribbean 
  • Initial presentations

    11:15 to 11:30

    Economic and social scenarios of the current crisis, differentiated impacts on women, available data on violence against women and girls, and mapping of government initiatives to address gender dimensions in responses to the pandemic 

    • Alicia Bárcena
      América Latina y el Caribe ante la pandemia del COVID-19 Efectos económicos y sociales e impacto en la vida de las mujeres
      Alicia Bárcena
      Latin America and the Caribbean and the COVID-19 pandemic: Economic and social effects and the impact on women’s lives
      María Noel Vaeza
      Género y el COVID-19 en América Latina y el Caribe: Dimensiones de género en la respuesta
      María Noel Vaeza
      Gender and COVID-19 in Latin America and the Caribbean: Integrating gender into the response framework
  • Statements by the countries

    11:30 to 12:30

    Main initiatives and implementation challenges, and areas of collaboration among governments in the region to address the crisis 

  • Closing and agreements of the meeting

    12:30 to 13:00