Estonia // Structures

The permanent body for dealing with gender-equality issues was established in December 1996 as the Gender Equality Bureau within the Department of International Cooperation and European Integration. It was reorganised into the Gender Equality Department in December 2003, and since 2005 it has been in charge of developing gender-mainstreaming processes and methodologies.

In 2011, a Gender Mainstreaming Working Group, composed of representatives from Estonian government ministries and coordinated by the Ministry of Social Affairs, was re-formed with the aim of providing training for a range of government employees on gender mainstreaming and drafting gender-mainstreaming strategies in various policy areas.

Furthermore, a Gender Equality and Equal Treatment Commissioner works on discrimination issues as an independent and impartial expert, monitoring compliance with the requirements of the Gender Equal­ity Act.