Groundbreaking Gender Policy For Indian Catholic Women

The Women's Commission of the South Indian Kerala Catholic Bishops Council (KCBC) has released a gender policy, reportedly a first by an Indian church, to promote gender equality and uplift the status of women.

"Women should be given responsible positions and made part of decision making bodies of church," the commission's Executive Secretary Beena Sebastian told the Press Trust of India.

"The policy should be implemented in all church run organisations, including educational institutions, university and colleges," she said. The agency quotes her saying that no other church in the country has set out such a policy.

The policy aims for violence free homes and workplaces, equal participation of women in all social activities as well as a change in the mindsets of men and women to promote gender justice within families, society and in the Church, the Express Buzz website reported.

The primary areas identified for the implementation of the plan include education, church activities, politics, health, financial independence, science and technology and the tribal communities.

It includes suggestions to ensure just wages for women employees and proper allowances for the women employed in Church run institutions, as well as equal pay for equal work and land and property rights for women.