Advocacy for political equality puts UNDP in national spotlight
When UNDP Administrator Helen Clark visited Thailand she met with prominent women leaders and discussed the exploration of a gender quota system in Thailand’s elections and providing training for Thai women who wish to enter politics.
- At the preview of “The Glass Ceiling” on December 8, 2011, more than 200 government officials, political parties, national partners, and staff from UN agencies watched the film and attended the national policy discussion on women’s political empowerment.
- More than 1,000 government officials and dignitaries viewed "The Glass Ceiling" as a part of International Women's Day festivities on March 8, 2012.
Since that 2009 conversation, UNDP began a series of bold initiatives designed to raise public awareness, increase knowledge and capacity, influence public policy, and empower women in Thailand to develop their full potential.
“A critical thing is to get women’s political empowerment--and that means getting the numbers of women participating in the process, from voting to being candidates, to being elected—up,” said Clark.
The need is tremendous. Women are vastly underrepresented in Thai politics. Out of about roughly 70,000 political positions in villages and towns across Thailand, women account for just 4 percent. As Helen Clark notes, women make up just 16% of the Thai Parliament, although they represent more than half of Thailand’s population. In Thailand’s restive South, it’s even worse as less than 9 percent of MPs are women. Cultural and religious beliefs contribute to this disparity, especially in Muslim communities.
Starting in December 2010, UNDP Thailand held a high-level forum with the Ministry of Social Development and Human Security to discuss the possibility of introducing a gender quota system into Thailand’s elections, which featured two distinguished panelists, a human rights activist from Pakistan and trail-blazing female politician from the Philippines.
UNDP Thailand and the Ministry of Social Development and Human Security commissioned a national study which surveyed public opinion on Thai attitudes towards women in politics. The results were remarkable.
86% of men surveyed agreed that a gender quota system in Thai politics would help increase female participation and over 85% of respondents agreed that a gender quota system would improve equality and provide greater opportunities for women in Thailand to demonstrate their political skills.
Highlighting the disparity in representation between men and women in Thailand and set against the backdrop of the election of Thailand’s first female Prime Minister, UNDP and the Ministry of Social Development created, "The Glass Ceiling,” a 30-minute Thai-language documentary about the many challenges women face when seeking public office and reviews potential policy options for improving participation, including the possibility of a gender quota system in Thailand.
"The Glass Ceiling" featured Thailand’s new Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, former Prime Minister and opposition party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva, and UNDP Administrator Helen Clark. The documentary amplified UNDP Thailand’s profile among senior government leadership.
As a result of the December 2011 policy dialogue, the Muslim Women’s Association approached UNDP to develop a gender programme to empower Muslim women in Thailand’s Southern provinces.
“A forum like this and leadership academy would be especially beneficial to Muslim women in the South who would like to become more involved in their communities and in politics,” said Chabee-ah Yuttakard of the Muslim Women’s Association.
UNDP Thailand on Facebook
- Hey Fans! Check out the job vacancies this week! Visit http://bit.ly/XEWgax for more information about each vacancy. Friday AT 10:00 PM
- เตรียมพบกับ ร้านกาแฟคอรัป “ฉัน” ไม่ขอรับ เร็วๆนี้! ร้านกาแฟนี้เปิดโอกาสให้เยาวชนไทยมีสถานที่พูดคุย แลกเปลี่ยนประสบการณ์ และวางแผนต่อต้านคอรัปชั่นในมหาวิทยาลัย และชุมชนของตน หาข้อมูลเพิ่มเติมเกี่ยวกับร้านกาแฟของเราได้ที่ #UNDPThailand #RefuseToBeCorrupt New “Refuse to be corrupt” cafés coming soon! Cafés will help Thai youth map out their plans to tackle corruption within their universities, communities and beyond! Check out more on this story here: http://bit.ly/1vTOeG4 #UNDPThailand #RefuseToBeCorrupt Friday AT 01:30 AM
- Good Morning #Thailand! Are you happy it's Friday today? Thursday AT 10:29 PM
- 58%ของโครงการพวกเราในปีนี้ ให้ความสำคัญต่อความยั่งยืนด้านสิ่งแวดล้อม เพื่อบรรลุเป้าหมายการพัฒนาแห่งสหัสวรรษ (Millennium Development Goals) เรียนรู้เกี่ยวกับโครงการของพวกเราได้ที่: This year, 58% of our projects in Thailand focus on ensuring environmental sustainability to achieve the Millennium Development Goal! Learn more about one of our projects here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nZMMPHSq05M #UNDPThailand 28 August AT 01:30 AM
- "See more posts on"UNDP Thailand on Facebook