THE HAGUE, Netherlands — 25 February 2019 — The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) took another step towards gender equality in the workplace by fulfilling its first commitment for the International Gender Champions (IGC) initiative with the appointment of ten OPCW Gender Focal Points.
In November 2018, OPCW’s Director-General, H.E. Mr Fernando Arias, joined the IGC, which is a leadership network that brings together female and male decision-makers determined to break down gender barriers and make gender equality a working reality in their spheres of influence. As an International Gender Champion, the Director-General’s commitment to foster an equitable and inclusive work environment includes establishing work-life balance arrangements available to all staff, and appointing Gender Focal Points in each OPCW Division to promote gender equality and ensure gender mainstreaming throughout the organisation.
OPCW’s Gender Focal Points will promote gender equality and ensure gender mainstreaming throughout the Organisation. This role includes promoting a greater awareness of gender related issues and a gender sensitive work environment; providing advocacy for gender related issues; contributing to the development and realisation of gender related goals; and monitoring and reporting on progress towards achieving these goals.
As the implementing body for the Chemical Weapons Convention, the OPCW, with its 193 Member States, oversees the global endeavour to permanently eliminate chemical weapons. Since the Convention’s entry into force in 1997, it is the most successful disarmament treaty eliminating an entire class of weapons of mass destruction.
Over 96% of all chemical weapon stockpiles declared by possessor States have been destroyed under OPCW verification. For its extensive efforts in eliminating chemical weapons, the OPCW received the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize.