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Dr. Yan Shang-luan on Gender Issues and CEDAW

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Dr. Yan Shang-luan on Gender Issues and CEDAW

Professor Yan Shang-luan of the Department of Social Work at Shih Chien University gave an informative talk on gender issues and drew reference from the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women or CEDAW, on December 26, 2012.

The lecture, titled “What you should know about gender issues: Introduction to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women”, provided a fresh look on the many customs and values that have taken root in the Taiwanese society and explained the differences between direct and indirect discrimination.

The issue of gender equality has come a long way in Taiwan, but statistical reviews show that women remain largely disadvantaged in the society, in terms of employment and legal protection. Most vulnerable among the group are those who suffer from domestic violence and female migrant workers. “It is a curiosity that while many countries consider domestic violence a crime, Taiwan’s Domestic Violence Prevention Act is subsumed under the Civil Code,” Dr. Yan said.

In face of an upcoming Chinese New Year, Dr. Yan questioned the tradition of dining with the family from the husband’s side on New Year’s Eve and explored the possibility of a dining-out joined by families of both sides at a place convenient for all.

The promulgation of CEDAW Implementation Act on January 1, 2012 marked the beginning of new and improved gender awareness in Taiwan. However, given a limited budget and the status of the responsible agency subsumed under the Executive Yuan, instead of a higher authority, a lot remains to be done before Taiwan can claim to be free of gender discrimination.

The lecture ended with Vice President Chen Chin Lih, also the Chair of the Human Rights Protection Committee of the Control Yuan, presenting Dr. Yan with a collection of books documenting Control Yuan’s effort in human rights protection over the past four years.