Civil society oversight of the security sector and gender

This toolkit provides an introduction to the importance and benefits of integrating gender issues into civil society oversight of the security sector, including practical examples and recommendations.

Civil society can contribute to the process of security sector oversight in a number of different ways, including through both formal and informal mechanisms.

Ensuring that gender issues are addressed, and that women and women’s organisations are fully included, can make these mechanisms more participatory and comprehensive. Gender-responsive civil society oversight mechanisms can more effectively ensure that the needs and interests of both women and men are visible and included, and therefore that the security sector is held accountable for protecting all members of the population.

This tool is designed to be a resource for civil society organisations engaged in oversight of the security sector, as well as those that seek to play a more active role in this regard. The tool is also relevant for policymakers and officials in national governments, international and regional organisations, and donor countries around the world that are engaged in designing and implementing security sector reforms and that could play an active role in strengthening and supporting civil society engagement.