Terminology affects how we view the world, so using masculine pronouns by default reinforces socio-cultural gender divisions. Equitas created a Gender and Sexual Identity Lexicon, as well as a User Guide for Inclusive Language to standardize use of gender inclusive language within projects and programs and to ensure our communications reflect our worldview.
- MAKE EQUAL SPACE AT THE TABLE!
At the inception phase of each of our programs, we conduct a baseline analysis to better understand which barriers prevent women, girls and other marginalized groups from fully participating in their communities. To address these barriers, we strive for equal representation of women and men in program activities, while ensuring that women’s specific needs are being taken into account in decision making and project design.
- RECOGNIZE INTERSECTIONALITY!
The persistence and prevalence of discrimination and sexism in the daily lives of women is undeniable. Many women are victims of the cross-cutting effects of discrimination, based on their race, ethnic and religious identity, disability, age, class, and/or sexual orientation. Working to advance gender equality, we always consider intersectionality and ensure the most marginalized can fully participate in our programs.
Too often, women speak exclusively with other women about the inequalities they face, and in general, men speak about it far too little. Internally, we conduct staffwide discussions and training and develop tools to better integrate gender equality into our work, such as implementing our Gender Equality Action Plan and Gender Policy. Through our programs, we integrate gender equality as a central component in community mobilization and policy dialogues and include not only women but also men in discussions about gender inequality.
- FACILITATE WOMEN’S PARTICIPATION!
Women often miss out on opportunities for many reasons, such as systemic barriers leading to exclusion and marginalization, and internalized socially constructed barriers. To change this, the community initiatives carried out by our project partners focus on increasing political participation of women, promoting spaces for them to participate in activities traditionally reserved for men, increasing access to education for girls and giving visibility to initiatives conducted by women in the community.