The year 2020 marks the 20th anniversary of the adoption of UN Security Council Resolution (SCR) 1325 on Women, Peace and Security (WPS). Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, meetings to mark these anniversaries have been put on hold. Although all regions are affected by COVID-19, the consequences are unevenly felt. Emerging research and lessons from previous pandemics indicate that women are disproportionately affected by COVID-19. Generally speaking, times of crisis tend to reveal and reinforce socio-economic inequalities, reflecting the distribution of power in societies. Lack of resources generally impacts women more than men; during the current lockdown, reports of sexual and gender-based violence, particularly domestic violence against women and girls, have spiked. The UN has recently announced that the COVID-19 crisis threatens ‘to push back the limited gains on gender equality and exacerbate the feminizing of poverty, vulnerability to violence, and women’s equal participation in the labour force’.
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