UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women

Mexico (CEDAW 25-07-2018)

The Committee considered the ninth periodic report of Mexico (CEDAW/C/MEX/9) at its 1608th and 1609th meetings (see CEDAW/C/SR.1608 and CEDAW/C/SR.1609), held on 6 July 2018. The Committee’s list of issues and questions is contained in CEDAW/C/MEX/Q/9 and the responses of Mexico are contained in CEDAW/C/MEX/Q/9/Add.1.

Concluding observations

D. Principal areas of concern and recommendations

Legislative framework and definition of discrimination against women

  1. The Committee welcomes the efforts made to strengthen harmonization of the legal framework with the Convention, including through amendments to article 73 of the Constitution that enable the Congress to expedite federal laws and the adoption of a national programme for equality and non-discrimination, covering the period 2014–2018. Nevertheless, it remains concerned that:

(a) The persistence of sex-based discriminatory provisions in legislation and the lack of harmonization among state-level civil and criminal codes continue to impede the effective implementation of the Convention and national gender equality legislation;

(b) The lack of effective mechanisms and the insufficient state-level budgetary allocations to implement and monitor the laws relating to gender equality and women’s right to a life free of violence have failed to eliminate discrimination, notably intersecting forms of discrimination, in particular against indigenous women, Mexican women of African descent, migrant women, women with disabilities, lesbian, bisexual and transgender women and intersex persons;

(c) The absence of a unified criminal code and of a judicial mechanism to adjudicate cases of discrimination against women has resulted in low prosecution rates in cases of discrimination on the basis of sex.

  1. In accordance with the State party’s obligations under the Convention and in line with target 5.1 of the Sustainable Development Goals, to end all forms of discrimination against all women and girls everywhere, and taking into account the positive efforts made through other general laws adopted by the State Party, the Committee recommends that the State party:                                        

(a) Repeal any provisions in its legislation that discriminate against women and girls and harmonize legal definitions and sanctions for discrimination and violence against women;                                        

(b)Reform article 73 of the Constitution to enable Congress to adopt a national criminal code regulating all criminal matters, including all crimes and sanctions, or to establish a minimum basis that fully guarantees the rights of women through a general law in criminal matters;                                        

(c) Establish a judicial complaint mechanism to deal specifically with cases of discrimination against women and ensure that adequate human, technical and financial resources are allocated for its effective implementation, including training for the judiciary on the application of the Convention and other anti-discrimination legislation;                                      

(d) Adopt a road map that includes adequate resources, a timeline and measurable targets requiring authorities at the federal, state and local levels to implement relevant laws to prevent and eliminate all forms of de facto discrimination against women, in particular indigenous women, Mexican women of African descent, migrant women, women with disabilities, lesbian, bisexual and transgender women and intersex persons.

Harmful practices

  1. The Committee is concerned about the limited provisions prohibiting unnecessary medical procedures on intersex children and the inadequate support and lack of effective remedies for intersex persons who have undergone medically unnecessary surgical procedures.
  2. In the light of joint general recommendation No. 31 of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women/general comment No. 18 of the Committee of the Rights of the Child (2014) on harmful practices, the Committee recommends that the State party adopt provisions explicitly prohibiting the performance of unnecessary surgical or other medical procedures on intersex children until they reach an age when they can give their free, prior and informed consent and provide families of intersex children with adequate counselling and support.
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