Armenia has joined the UN Convention on “Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination of Women”.
In accordance with the Constitution, all people are equal before the law and gender discrimination is forbidden. The National Statistical Service lists the average number of women working in culture and science in 1999 as 111 800; in 2000 – 117 400; in 2001 – 116 600; in 2002 – 105 300; and in 2003 – 98 600 people. The present Culture Minister and Deputy-minister, Deputy-speaker of the National Assembly, Chairperson of the Permanent Commission on Science, Education, Culture, Youth and Sports are women, as are 62% of ministerial employees (5 231 people, 1 975 of whom are men and 3 228 are women). The number of women in cultural NGOs and in institutions engaged in cultural production is also high.
The Republic of Armenia adopted the “National Programme for 2004-2010 on Improvement of the Situation of Women and the Elevation of their Role in Society”. The programme envisaged a number of objectives and activities most of which were implemented, however a proper evaluation of results of the programme have never been made. Since 2011, The Ministry of Culture has been applying the new gender policy, aimed at:
- overcoming gender discrimination and achieving equality between women and men;
- ensuring equal rights and equal opportunities for women and men to realise their cultural needs and to promote the development of social, legal and political culture;
- overcoming women’s under-representation in the decision-making of legislative and executive branches of power and to strengthen social cohesion. Ensuring 30% female representation in the legislative and executive branches of government decision-making levels;
- making periodic assessments of the gender situation in the country; and
- increasing gender sensitivity among public employees.