Although Slovakia made some commitments to gender equality in the early 1990s (e.g. the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action), gender-equality policies were further developed during the European Union (EU) accession negotiations. In 2001, the Concept for Equal Opportunities for Women and Men was adopted and it referred to gender mainstreaming as an approach to tackle gender inequality.


The main responsibility for gender-equality policies falls under the remit of the Department for Gender Equality and Equal Opportunities within the Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs and Family. Set up in 1999, its mandate is to coordinate, design and implement the government’s policy on gender equality and equal opportunities.

Laws and Policies

No specific law on gender equality exists in Slovakia, but the individual provisions of European Commission directives have been incorporated, particularly in the Anti-Discrimination Act 2004. The National Strategy for Gender Equality 2009–2013 was the first policy document in Slovakia to introduce gender mainstreaming. Its action plan transforms the national strategy into concrete measures, including creating monitoring and evaluation mechanisms for gender mainstreaming.