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Mali: A crucial step towards equality for men and women in Mali trade unions

Participatory Gender Audit with tools developed by CNV Internationaal

Making significant steps in promoting gender equality within trade unions


Both partner organisations in Mali did a Participatory Gender Audit with the tools developed by CNV Internationaal. It was a crucial step in identifying and understanding the inequalities between men and women in their organisations. 

Both UNTM and CSTM have experienced a change in leadership since the beginning of the auditing process. They are demonstrating an increasingly stronger commitment to eliminating gender inequality in their unions. This success story of CSTM and UNTM leaders in promoting gender equality is an inspiring example of how new leadership and taking concrete steps can create more equal and inclusive organisations. 

A participatory and inclusive approach

The success of this approach also lies in the participatory and inclusive nature of the process of the gender audit, which was piloted with the expertise of CNV Internationaal and its Africa office. This approach has led to a strong sense of ownership for the audit process, not only from the women’s committee, but especially from the leaders.


Mali Equality Trade Unions Gender men and women

Gender inequality map

One key tool in this process has been the ‘Gender Inequality Map,’ which visually showed the differences between men and women in our unions. This Map has provided valuable information, allowing us to make concrete changes, such as adopting gender and age differentiated attendance lists for our Congresses and General Assemblies. These lists now also include quotas for women and youth participation.


The leaders of both organisations are now planning to include quotas for women and young people in decisionmaking bodies at all levels of their affiliated organisations. Further, they are adopting an internal gender policy with mechanisms for preventing and addressing gender-based violence. They have also allocated a substantial amount of budget to supporting women’s and youth committees in their unions.


Moving forward

Mali Equality Trade Unions Gender men and women



The Gender Audit Steering Committee of both organisations will continue to follow up on recommendations made from 2024 onwards, ensuring that the commitment to gender equality remains strong. 

A positive ripple effect of the gender audit is visible with other union federations now doing their own audits, further expanding this initiative.

Publication date 28 05 2024