Message of the Executive Director/ Centre for Gender Equity/Equality, UGC:

We call on universities to lead the way for zero tolerance in gender inequity and gender based violence.

The University Grants Commission (UGC) recognising that without addressing the deep rooted inequalities and inequities in gender issues within the Sri Lankan University System, universities cannot genuinely consider themselves to be centres of academic excellence, established a Centre for Gender Equity/Equality (CGEE) at the UGC in September 2016.

The Goal of CGEE is to promote gender equity and equality in Sri Lankan universities by facilitating the establishment of gender sensitive university sub cultures and university environments which allow students and staff of universities to persue their learning and work without oppression and discrimination.

While the work of the UGC, through its Standing Committee on Gender Equity/Equality and the CGEE, will include developing   overarching policies  that will create the required macro framework to promote a violence free university system,  universities are expected to undertake empowering, engaging and educating  their staff and students of all gender identities to explore, celebrate and educate the campus community about gender equality and to lead the way for zero tolerance in ragging and sexual and  gender based violence.(SGBV)

Considerable progress has already been achieved towards:

  1. Awareness creation and empowerment of policy makers, management, academic and administrative staff of all levels and students of all universities on GEE and strategies to prevent sexual and Gender based and Violence (SGBV) and ragging;
  2. Provision for prevention/ addressing complaints/ redress for ragging and SGBV through a central complaint mechanism including an Online System established at the UGC.
  3. Zero tolerance policies on GEE, ragging and SGBV by the universities facilitated by CGEE.

The launch of  CGEE is a call to action, and a message of the urgency and importance of achieving gender equality and prevention of ragging and SGBV in Sri Lankan university system. The CGEE will leave no stone unturned to achieve its goal.

 

Emeritus Professor Uma Coomaraswamy

Director Center for Gender Equity Equality