ADC holds successful event on gender and judge selection
On Thursday, July 13, the Asociación por los Derechos Civiles (Association for Civil Rights – ADC) organized a meeting titled Gender and Judge Selection: Promoting Diversity in the Magistracy Council to examine the recent changes in the regulations governing judge appointment processes, which adopt the gender perspective in the opposition test and background check stages.
The gathering, which took place in the Picasso Room of the Cyan Hotel Americas, was introduced by Angeles Baliero Burundarena, from ADC’s Board of Directors, and moderated by our project leader Marianela Milanes. The panel included attorneys Maricel Asar (Master and professor in Constitutional Law – UBA) and Florencia Burdeos (specialist in Civil Law and member of the Women’s Network for Justice).
After reviewing ADC’s latest activities in terms of research, analysis, and debate on the subject, Baliero Burundarena, who is also an advisor to the Women’s Network for Justice, gave the floor to the expert group.
“Those of us who form this panel are pursuing or witnessing a number of positive actions aiming to unlock and bridge the structural gender inequality that affects women’s access to positions in the Judiciary, for which ADC has carried out several initiatives especially focused on the Magistracy Council,” said Baliero Burundarena.
Inequalities and possible solutions
Attorney Maricel Asar, in turn, shared part of an article of her authorship to be published soon, where she states that “several studies have criticized the role played by the Judiciary in preserving gender inequalities and reinforcing the oppression of women, not only through the stances adopted when making decisions but also by omitting certain questions. The Judicial Branch must give itself a more plural composition, especially when resolving cases of institutional adjudication if we want to move forward in consolidating democratic processes of mutual justification,” she said.
Next, attorney Florencia Burdeos, who is one of the authors of ADC’s recent document, Guaranteeing the Independence of the Judiciary: The Role of the Magistracy Council, summarized several of the aspects that should be considered when addressing the topic: the reform to the norms governing opposition tests, gender (in)equality in the Magistracy Council, the access of women to the body and the profile of the candidates in the judge selection processes, the appointment of magistrates as a complex issue and the Mexican experience of holding exclusive calls for female applicants. She also stressed that “the Judiciary must incorporate women in decision-making positions to respond to the demands of legitimacy and democracy, which are achieved through a diverse and representative structure.”
After a Q&A session, project leader Marianela Milanes closed the meeting by pointing out that “The intersectional approach on gender helps to acknowledge women in their diversity, crossed by the different categories of ethnicity, race, sexual identity… Conceiving the gender perspective through this intersectionality is broadening, as it recognizes diversity and is an inclusive practice in itself,” she ended.