Research and Reports

last updated April 2013
 
In 2005, The Center for Equality Advancement released a report on Equal Opportunities for Women and Men. Monitoring law and practice in Lithuania. This report is a part of “Bringing the EU Home”, a three-year project (2004–2006) conceptualized as a follow up to the Program on Equal Opportunities for Women and Men in the European Accession Process. An assessment of the status of equal opportunities, de jure and de facto, was carried out in seven of the ten candidate countries: Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland and Romania. The EU Directives on equal opportunities provided the framework for monitoring and analyzing corresponding legislation, institutions and practices.

The most recent Concluding observations of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women were released in 2008. The Committee commended Lithuania for adopting and implementing National Programmes and Strategies to fight violence against women and for amending the Law on Equal Opportunities for Women and Men in order to prohibit direct discrimination and to shift the burden of proof from the alleged victim to the person or institution against which the complaint has been lodged.
However, the Committee recognized the need to make treaties and concrete measures as well as Committees recommendations widely known among officials and society (the Committee indicated an absence of any court decisions that refer to the Convention). Lithuania was invited to establish regional and local branches of the Office of the Equal Opportunities Ombudsman to facilitate women’s access to these procedures and remedies for violations of their rights.
The Committee also encouraged Lithuania to systematically adopt laws on temporary special measures and timetables or quotas, enhanced by a system of incentives, and effectively implement them in order to accelerate the realization of women’s de facto equality with men in areas of political and public life, education, and public as well as private employment.
Lithuania was called to strengthen its efforts and take comprehensive and ongoing measures to eliminate gender stereotyping through awareness-rising and educational campaigns. The Committee also recommended ensuring adequate visibility and attention to women human rights problems through allocating necessary funds and resources for the Office of the Equal Opportunities Ombudsman, for implementation of the country’s Programmes and Strategies, supporting national and regional women’s NGO’s, etc.
 
In 2013, the European Institute for Gender Equality launched a report on Female genital mutilation in the European Union and Croatia. The report aims to support policy makers and all relevant institutions by providing them with reliable and comparable data for evidence-based actions and policy improvement in the area of FGM. It reveals that Lithuania has signed the necessary international conventions to condemn FGM and has national laws which may be applicable to FGM cases. Moreover, Lithuania is on the list of EU countries which acknowledge FGM as a ground for asylum.
However, there is no FGM prevalence data available in Lithuania and the number of migrants from Africa is very low. It is known that in 2008, refugee status was granted to a one-and-a-half-year-old girl from Ethiopia based on the assumed risk of FGM.
 
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations released an Overview of the Socio-Economic Position of Rural Women in Selected Central and Eastern European Countries - Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia (1996). This report examines the role of rural women on the farm and in the family, their participation in education, training, and services, their knowledge of home economics, their level of household technology, problems, priorities, social security and legal issues they face, and domestic research and development programs on rural women. Section 10.3 specifically addresses Lithuania.
 
In 2011, the Human Rights Monitoring Institute (HMRI) launched an Overview on Human Rights Implementation in Lithuania 2009-2010. The study addresses the right to privacy, freedom of expression, the right to a fair trial, discrimination, racism and other forms of intolerance especially among vulnerable groups, such as women, children, crime victims, convicts, and the mentally disabled. Though the overview includes a wide range of human rights violations it also focuses on violence in families and implementation of equal opportunities in Lithuania.
According to the document, violence against women is more widespread in Lithuania than in any other country in European Union. More than 50% of residents stated that they know at least one victim of domestic violence and at least one perpetrator. The idea that domestic violence is a private family issue is still supported by some part of society.
HMRI also criticized the Lithuanian government for not providing enough funding to implement essential programs, such as a toll-free psychological phone line, which was temporarily closed in 2009 because of lack of funding. The government was also criticized for not securing the rights to proper services for mentally disabled persons.
 
In 2000, The International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights presented a report based on information collected by regional coordinators and local rapporteurs participating in the IHF "Project to Investigate the Status of Women's Human Rights in Eastern Europe and the N.I.S." This project contains data in trafficking in women in the countries including Lithuania. The report may be found here A Form of Slavery: Trafficking in Women in OSCE Member States.

Public Perception and Awareness of Trafficking of Women in the Baltic States by the International Organization for Migration was launched in 2002. The report compares the results of two public opinion surveys focusing on the problems of trafficking in women in the Baltic States.
The surveys were carried out in 2001 and 2002 and address not only public attitudes and the level of awareness concerning trafficking in women, but also related topics, like the perceived reasons for women's migration from the Baltics, and information sources used when searching for employment abroad. The second poll also included questions designed to evaluate the effectiveness of the IOM prevention campaign against trafficking in women that was carried out from 2001 to 2002.
 
In 2003, Ms. Radhika Coomaraswamy, the Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences, United Nations High Commissions for Human Rights, published a report on Integration of the Human Rights of Women and the Gender Perspective - Violence Against Women, Addendum 1. The report introduces to international and national developments in the area of violence against women. Information regarding Lithuania may be found on page 366.

Despite the fact that rape, including spousal rape, is criminalized in Lithuania and the first domestic violence law came in to force at the end of 2011, the report states that societal violence against women remains a serious problem in the country. During the year, 39 shelters, funded by municipal governments and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), provided assistance to victims of domestic violence, forced prostitution, and human trafficking.
Women in Lithuania are still embarrassed to report sexual harassment to institutions. The Equal Opportunities Ombudsman received no complaints of sexual harassment during the year. However, data shows that approximately 20 percent of women have experienced sexual harassment during their lifetime.
According to Lithuanian laws, women and men have the same legal rights in the judicial system, including family and property. However, in practice women continue to face discrimination. Women often earn less than their counterparts and were significantly underrepresented at the managerial level.
 
 
 
The Women’s Issues Information Center released Women and Men in Lithuanian Society – 2009 based on statistics gathered in 1994, 2000, and in 2009. The core of the research is a comparative methodology which reveals how Lithuanian society has changed in a past 20 years. The research reveals that Lithuanians have become more liberal regarding women’s rights and gender equality issues. The view of women in labor market has changed fundamentally since 1994. A significant part of Lithuanian society believes that having more women in politics could benefit the country in various spheres. However, the change is not happening as fast as it could be and it is more noticeable in the spheres where the government is implementing its strategies. Violence in families and salary inequality for women and men are still ongoing issues in Lithuania.
 
 
If you know of online reports on human rights or women's rights that you would like to see posted on this page, please contact the Website Administrator at stopvaw@mnadvocates.org. Please provide the title, authors' names, and URL of the online report. Submission of an online report does not guarantee posting on this website, and posting is at the discretion of the Website Administrator.