COVID-19 reached Lebanon at a time of deep economic crisis. Lock down measures have accentuated the crisis and generated a spike in unpaid care work and gender-based violence – both of which have been borne largely by women.
Tackling this requires institutional reform on a magnitude not yet seen in Lebanon. It requires holistic efforts to address issues of governance, corruption and inequality. In this undertaking, Lebanon’s NAP 1325 provides a useful framework for action; it prioritizes the gendered needs of women and girls in times of crisis, pandemics, and conflicts. It calls for women’s increased participation in response planning and recovery efforts and commits the Government to ensure that gender analysis is incorporated into crisis and recovery plans, at the national and local level. It also calls for the creation of economic opportunities for women in host communities in Lebanon to support women’s economic empowerment, a decrease of negative coping mechanisms and exploitative practices, and to support stability of local communities. The NAP 1325 also recognizes that women’s engagement in peace and security deliberations are vital to the country’s stability and security.