Action Plan

Action plan for the implementation of the national programme of equal opportunities for women and men for 2015–2021


Baby Friendly Hospitals


Code of Administrative Offenses of the Republic of Lithuania


Civil Code of the Republic of Lithuania


Code of Criminal Procedure of the Republic of Lithuania


United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women


United Nations Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women


Criminal Code of the Republic of Lithuania


Department of National Minorities under the Government of the Republic of Lithuania


Educational Development Centre under the MoES

Fourth Programme

The National Programme of Equal Opportunities for Women and Men for the years 2015–2021, approved Resolution No 112 of the Government of the Republic of Lithuania of 4 February 2015


Foreigners Registration Centre of State Border Guard Service


Government of the Republic of Lithuania

Istanbul Convention

Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence


Information Technology and Communications Department under the MoI


Labour Code of the Republic of Lithuania


Law on Equal Opportunities of the Republic of Lithuania


Law on Equal Opportunities for Women and Men of the Republic of Lithuania


Ministry of Foreign Affairs


Ministry of Economy


Ministry of Education and Science


Ministry of Health


Ministry of National Defence


Ministry of Social Security and Labour


Ministry of the Interior


Ministry of Justice


National Courts Administration


Non-Governmental Organisations


Office of the Equal Opportunities Ombudsperson

Recommendations for Lithuania

Concluding observation of Committee of the year 2014 on the fifth periodic report of the Republic of Lithuania (CEDAW/C/LTU/5)


Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania


Specialised Assistance Centre


Youth-friendly health care services


1.The Government of the Republic of Lithuania issues the sixth report (hereinafter referred to as this Report) on the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women in accordance with Article 18(1)(b) of the Convention (hereinafter the Convention). This report was prepared on the basis of the general guidance adopted by the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (hereinafter the Committee). The information in this report represents the 2011–2017 period.

2.This report was prepared on the basis of the material provided by all ministries and other institutions by the commission set up by order No. A1-33 on 29 January 2018 by the Ministry of Social Security and Labour, including members from the Ministry of National Defence (hereinafter the MoND), the Ministry of Social Security and Labour (hereinafter the MoSSL), the Ministry of Health (hereinafter the MH), the Ministry of Justice (hereinafter the MoJ), the Educational Development Centre (hereinafter the EDC), the Ministry of Education and Science (hereinafter the MoES), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (hereinafter the MFA) and the Ministry of the Interior (hereinafter the MoI).

3.This document is drafted in light of the Committee’s final observations of 2014 on the fifth periodic report of the Republic of Lithuania (hereinafter referred to as the Recommendations for Lithuania).

4.On 24 May 2018, its draft was considered by the Commission on Equal Opportunities for Women and Men, consisting of representatives of various ministries, non-governmental organisations (hereinafter referred to as the NGOs), the Office of the Equal Opportunities Ombudsperson (hereinafter the OEOO) and others that were invited to attend its meetings. In addition, the draft of this report was published on the website of the MoSSL for the review of all stakeholders.

Information under the articles of the convention and recommendations to Lithuania

5.Concerning part 9 of the Recommendations for Lithuania. The Convention and the Optional Protocol are publicly available and accessible on the websites of the MoSSL, MFA, the Lithuanian Women’s Lobbying Organisation, as well as in the Public Register of Legal Acts. The Committee’s Recommendations to Lithuania and general recommendations (hereinafter referred to as the Recommendations) are available on the website of the MoSSL, in the section on equality between women and men. Various trainings were organised in 2014–2016, including training for judges (Annexes 1, 8, 10), in accordance with the judge training programme approved by the Judicial Council and coordinated with the MoJ. In 2015, the issues of the Convention were included in the training organised for the members of the Commission for Equal Opportunities for Women and Men.

Article 1

6.Information on the definitions of discrimination was provided in the previous report. Additional information on the definition of discrimination is provided in other parts of this Report.

Article 2

7.On 10 October 2014, the LEOWM was supplemented with paragraph 2 of Article 3 stipulating that state institutions provide measures for ensuring equal opportunities for women and men in strategic planning documents. Municipal authorities provide measures aimed at ensuring equal opportunities for women and men in the municipal strategic development and (or) municipal strategic action plans. This supplementing of the law created the prerequisite for the proper incorporation of equality between women and men as a horizontal principle across all levels.

8.In order to ensure and improve effective protection against discrimination based on gender, the amendments to the LEOWM were adopted in 2014 and became effective on 23 July 2014. These amendments provided for the obligation of educational institutions to ensure that pupils, students and employees of educational institutions, science and academic institutions would not be subject to sexual harassment.

9.The amendment of the LEOWM ensuring more effective protection of individuals from discrimination became effective on 28 June 2016. This amendment clarified that discrimination includes discrimination against women due to pregnancy and maternity, and that not only sexual, but other forms of harassment are also prohibited at work. The provisions of the LEOWM have been harmonised with the provisions of the Law on the Approval, Entry into Force and Implementation of the Code of Administrative Offenses (hereinafter referred to as the CAO).

10.On 8 November 2016, the Seimas adopted the new wording of the LEOWM, which was initiated by the OEOO and came into effect from 1 January 2017. The new version of the LEOWM eliminated the procedures for the appointment and dismissal of the Equal Opportunities Ombudsperson and the procedures for investigating complaints. These provisions have been transposed into the LEO, which has also been complemented by the competence of the Equal Opportunities Ombudsperson, with the possibility of carrying out preventive and educational activities and dissemination of equal opportunities. In addition, it unified the terms for investigating complaints with other investigators’ scrutiny timelines: the complaint must be investigated and the applicant should receive an answer within 3 months from the date of receiving of the complaint. If the controller refuses to investigate the complaint, the applicant must be informed within 10 business days (instead of the previous 15 business days).

11.On 11 May 2017, the amendments to the LEO and the LEOWM were adopted, obliging the employer to ensure protection against sexual harassment not only to term-contract employees, and to civil servants, but also to job seekers.

12.Article 26(1) of the Labour Code (hereinafter the LC) establishes the principles of gender equality and non-discrimination on other grounds. This Article implies that in any employer’s relationship with employees, direct and indirect discrimination, harassment, sexual harassment, instruction to discriminate on the grounds of gender, race, nationality, language, origin, social status, age, sexual orientation, disability, ethnicity, membership of a political party, or in association with religion, belief, faith or convictions, except in the case of religious beliefs, faith or convictions of a person in religious communities, societies or centres where the demand to the employee for a confession of religion, faith or conviction, taking into account the ethos of the religious community, society or centre, is normal, legitimate and justified, on the grounds of the intention to have a child (children), due to circumstances not related to the professional characteristics of employee or other grounds established by law, are prohibited. Article 26(6) of the LC obliges employers having an average number of employees of more than fifty, to adopt and publish, in the normal ways in the workplace, the measures implementing and enforcing the principles of equal opportunities policy.

13.From 2016, the system of the OEOO for the management of documents and statistics on incoming inquiries and ongoing surveys has been improved allowing to collect data on complaints on potential gender discrimination grouped on the basis of gender and geographic distribution of applicants (Annexes 2–4).

14.From May to June 2016, Statistics Lithuania analysed the possibilities of developing gender equality indicators by municipalities and counties. The Plan for the Development of the Indicator Database was supplemented in 2017 and since 2017 it has published more detailed gender statistics indicators on the Official Statistics Portal https: (

15.Part 11 of the Recommendations for Lithuania. The prohibition of discrimination on the grounds of gender is included in the LEOWM and LEO. Definitions of discrimination ensure the protection of women from multiple discriminations. The LEOWM defines the concepts of direct and indirect discrimination, equal opportunities for women and men, violation of equal rights for women and men, harassment, and sexual harassment. The LEO defines the concepts of direct and indirect discrimination, harassment, instruction to discriminate on the basis of gender, race, nationality, citizenship, language, origin, social status, beliefs, convictions or faith, age, sexual orientation, disability, ethnicity, and religion.

16.Administrative justice. The new CAO, which replaced the previously effective Code of Administrative Law Offenses, was adopted and came into force from 1 January 2017. In order to further improve the legal protection against discrimination on the basis of gender, Article 81 of the CAO establishes administrative liability for breach of equal rights and equal opportunities for women and men. Article 36 of the CAO, which stipulates aggravating circumstances for administrative liability, states, inter alia, that if an administrative offense was committed as a hatred for the person(s) or discriminating against a person(s) on the basis of gender, race, nationality, language, descent, social status, religion, convictions and views or other grounds, if the offense was committed against a pregnant woman, when it was known or apparent that she is pregnant or against the person with a disability when it was known or apparent that he is disabled, this would be an aggravating circumstance.

17.Criminal justice. From 12 May 2017 the dispositions of the provisions of the Criminal Code (hereinafter referred to as the CRC), that establish criminal liability for discrimination on the grounds of nationality, race, sex, descent, religion or belonging to other groups, incitement against any national, racial, ethnic, religious or other group of persons and creation and operation of groups and organizations having the purpose of discriminating against or instigating (CRC, Articles 169, 170, 1701) were complemented by the expanding the grounds of discrimination on age and disability. The CRC provides for the following grounds for prohibition of discrimination or incitement to hatred — gender, sexual orientation, race, nationality, language, descent, social status, religion, convictions or views. The CRC provides for criminal liability for crimes and criminal offenses against the equal rights of persons and freedom of conscience.

18.From 13 July 2013, amendments to the CRC came into force. The aim of the amendments was to harmonise the provisions of the Law on Protection against Domestic Violence and the provisions of applicable criminal laws, to enable law enforcement agencies to more quickly investigate criminal acts occurring as domestic violence and to strengthen the protection of individuals who suffer from domestic violence (Annexes 5–7).

19.On 1 October 2017, the Law on the amendment to the Code of Criminal Procedure (hereinafter the CCP) became effective. It abolished the private prosecution institute, i.e. where persons who suffered from a criminal offense would no longer have to support the trial in court, in respect of certain criminal acts, and under the conditions provided for in the CCP, the pretrial investigation will be conducted; and the prosecutor will stand up to the prosecution in court.

20.From 19 May 2015, the Law on Amending the Criminal Code entered into effect, in which the penal sanction provided for in Article 721 CRC was supplemented by the obligation to reside separately from the victim (formerly it merely provided for a prohibition to approach the victim; the wording was changed to an obligation not to approach the victim closer than prescribed distance). The provision allowing the Court to oblige the perpetrator to live separately in case they were living together for a term established by the Court, or until the question of a right to housing to victim or perpetrator will be resolved under the procedure established by laws after the prohibition to approach the victim were imposed, has been deleted from the penal sanction.

21.Civil Justice. A person suffering discrimination based on gender, sexual or other forms of harassment has the right to demand compensation from the guilty persons for pecuniary and non-pecuniary damage (LEOMW, Article 18). The damage compensation procedure is established by the Civil Code (hereinafter referred to as CC). The court in assessing the amount of non-pecuniary damage shall take into consideration the consequences of such damage sustained, the gravity of the fault of the person by whom the damage is caused, his financial status, the amount of pecuniary damage sustained by the aggrieved person, also any other circumstances of importance for the case, likewise to the criteria of good faith, justice and reasonableness. The provisions of the CC regulating civil liability issues did not change in 2011–2017.

22.Article 12(2) of the Law on Protection against Domestic Violence provides that a perpetrator of violence who causes damage to a person’s health, property, environment, also inflicts non-pecuniary damage must compensate the victim of violence for the damage incurred in accordance with the procedure laid down by legal acts of the Republic of Lithuania.

Article 3

23.At the beginning of 2015, the National Programme of Equal Opportunities for Women and Men for 2015–2021 (hereinafter the Fourth Programme) was adopted with the aim of systematically and consistently implementing the issues for the equal opportunities of women and men in all areas, and ensuring consistent implementation of the EOWM, in accordance with EU and international commitments in the field of equality between women and men. Objectives of the Fourth Programme — (1) to promote equal opportunities for women and men in the field of employment and work; (2) to seek a balanced participation of women and men in decision-making and in occupying the highest positions; (3) to increase the effectiveness of institutional mechanisms for equality between women and men; (4) to promote gender mainstreaming in education, culture, healthcare, access to justice and other areas. The following tasks should contribute to the integration of the gender perspective: 1) encouraging young women and men to choose the areas of study, occupations “non‑traditional for women and men”; encouraging men to acquire higher education; promoting non-discriminatory attitudes towards women and men in textbooks and other teaching materials; 2) ensuring the possibility of checking for cervix, breast, prostate cancer and providing information on such checks; conducting public education on reproductive health issues; 3) promoting the application of the principle of gender equality in assessing the contribution of creators to culture and the arts, and promoting greater participation of men in cultural initiatives; 4) raising public awareness of environmental issues; 5) increasing the number of professionals who can advise and teach on the issues of equality between women and men and serve as advisers in international missions; 6) raising awareness among the public, especially women in rural areas, of remedies, including the possibility of obtaining free legal aid; 7) increasing Lithuania’s contribution to the activities of international organisations related to the implementation of the policy of equality between women and men and to disseminate best practice in Lithuania.

24.On 13 April 2015, the Action Plan for the Fourth Programme (hereinafter referred to as the Action Plan) was adopted, the implementation of which is the responsibility of each ministry. The implementation of the Action Plan was proposed to the municipalities, OEOO, NCA, the Association of Municipalities of Lithuania, NGOs, social partners (trade unions and employers’ organisations), university centres for gender studies.

25.In order to increase the effectiveness of the institutional mechanisms of equality between women and men, the Fourth Programme set out the following objectives: increasing the capacity of civil servants and employees working under employment contracts to integrate gender mainstreaming among law enforcement officers, journalists and other staff; assisting municipalities in taking action to ensure equal opportunities for women and men; implementing the gender impact assessment of legislation and other decision-making projects; improving the statistical information on equality between women and men, supplementing it with new statistical indicators comparable with EU Member States.

26.In 2015, the Methodology for gender impact assessment of draft decisions (a gender equality guidance for state and municipal institutions) was drafted to help state and municipal institutions to work more effectively in the area of gender equality and to aim for policy-makers to include the gender equality aspect in draft legal regulation decisions; changing the attitude of state and self-government personnel and abandoning the neutral attitude towards gender in the process of drafting legal regulation decisions, by changing the procedural culture.

27.Concerning part 13 of the Recommendations for Lithuania. In 2015, Mrs. Agneta Skardžiuvienė was appointed as the Equal Opportunities Ombudsperson. During the reporting period, important amendments to the legislation of the LEOWM and LEO were adopted.

28.In 2016, the OEOO, in co-operation with the Association of Municipalities of Lithuania and the Lithuanian Women’s Lobbying Organisation, has started to implement the project “Municipal Success Code — Gender Equality”, initiated by the MoSSL, and financed by the European Structural Funds. The purpose of the project is to systematically seek to reduce the gender gap in municipalities by raising public awareness of gender equality issues, identifying the factors determining the equality of women and men and developing and implementing targeted measures to ensure equal opportunities. The project provides for performing gender analysis in municipalities, developing practical recommendations for municipalities on targeted measures, and organisation of trainings for representatives of municipal administrations and enterprises subordinate to municipal administrations on the integration of equal opportunities, planning of targeted measures, implementation and monitoring of the effects. In order to assess the situation of women and men in municipalities, a list of gender equality indicators in municipalities was prepared in 2017, on the basis of which an electronic map would be developed to identify gender gaps and define the need for appropriate targeted measures in 9 areas: demography, knowledge, participation in the labour market, access to social services, economic power (resources), authorities and decision-making, health and health services, domestic violence and time. The project will continue until December 2019.

29.Concerning part 15 of the Recommendations for Lithuania. Information on the implementation of this recommendation was submitted in the interim report of Lithuania of 2016. The funding of NGOs working on equality between women and men has been steadily increased. In 2017, six NGOs working in the field of gender equality were financed through the tendering procedure by allocating them 69 thousand euro from the state budget. For comparison: allocations in 2015 amounted to 22 thousand euro, in 2016 — 41 thousand euro. The number of NGOs receiving funding is growing: in 2015, a total of 2 NGOs were funded, in 2016 — 3, and in 2017 — 6. The draft of the new Action Plan for 2018–2021 provides for partial financing of the institutional strengthening projects of eligible NGOs corresponding to the purposes of the programme.

30.Concerning part 17 of the recommendations for Lithuania. In March of 2006, the Seimas Ombudsperson’s Office was accredited with an “A” status in the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions.

Article 4

31.In the implementation of the Law on the Amendment of the Labour Code (hereinafter the LC) and the Law on Safety and Health at Work which were prepared in the framework of the project “Development of the Lithuanian social model, including the increase of employment, improving the regulations of labour relations and sustainability of social insurance”, the Description of the labour conditions of women before and after pregnancy and breastfeeding women was drawn up and approved that came into effect from 1 July 2017, thereby continuing the regulation that was applicable before 30 June 2017.

32.In order to protect maternity, including through the measures contained in the 2016 Convention, the LC provisions of 2016 provided for more favourable conditions of vacation leave regarding the working year in which the annual leave includes work days not worked due to temporary incapacity for work, sick leave for family members, pregnancy and maternity leave, parental leave (LC, Article 127(4)).

33.According to the LC, the employer shall ensure the employee’s right to return to the same or an equivalent job (position) after special leave under the conditions of work no later than the previous conditions of work, including the wage, and use all better conditions, including the increase of wage, to which he might have been entitled if he had worked. (LC, Article 131(2)).

34.The LC sets out more favourable conditions for annual leave for pregnant workers before and after pregnancy and maternity leave; to the parents during the pregnancy and maternity leave of the child’s mother, before or after the parental leave (LC, points 1 and 2 of Article 128(2)). The sick ones for granting such an old leave in the workplace will be prepared by giving preferences for these employees (as a matter of priority) — for pregnant workers and workers who raise at least one child under three years of age; the employees who, as single parents, are raising at least one child before he has reached the age of fourteen or a disabled child before he has reached the age of eighteen; employees raising two or more children (LC, points 1 to 3 of Article 128(4)).

35.According to the LC, women are granted maternity leave of 70 calendar days before giving birth and 56 calendar days after delivery (in case of complicated childbirth or the birth of two or more children — 70 calendar days). If the employee does not use the pregnancy and childbirth leave, the employer must grant fourteen days of leave immediately after birth, regardless of the employee’s request. During the leave, employees will receive benefits in accordance with the Law on Sickness and Maternity Social Insurance (LC, Article 132).

36.Workers (the child’s parent/adoptive parent) after childbirth will have 30 calendar days of uninterrupted parental leave. This leave is granted at any time from the birth of the child until the child reaches the age of 3 months. During the leave, employees will receive benefits in accordance with the Law on Sickness and Maternity Social Insurance (LC, Article 133).

37.Parental leave before the child has reached the age of three shall be granted, at the choice of the family, to the mother/adoptive mother, the father/adoptive father, the grandmother, the grandfather or any other relatives who are actually raising the child also to the employee who has been recognised as the guardian of the child. The leave may be taken as a single period or be distributed in portions. Employees who are entitled to this leave may take it in turns (LC, Article 134).

38.The employer must provide, on the basis of a worker’s request, unpaid leave if it is submitted by: employee raising a child under 14 years of age — up to 14 calendar days; the disabled employee, as well as the employee raising a disabled child under 18 years of age or nursing a disabled person who requires constant care — up to 30 calendar days; the father during the pregnancy and childbirth leave and child care leave of the child at his request (mother during the father’s child care leave); the total duration of such leave shall not exceed three months (LC, Article 137(1)).

39.Free time granted during the business day (shift) at the employee’s request and with the consent of the employer for personal needs of the employee. Parties to the labour contract may agree on the transfer of the working time to another business day (shift), without prejudice to the requirements of the maximum working time and minimum rest time (LC, Article 137(3)).

40.The LC has enshrined favourable working time modes: 1) invariable duration of the business day (shift) and the number of business days per week; 2) cumulative working time records when the working time norm of the entire accounting period is performed during the accounting period; 3) flexible working hours when the employee must be at the workplace during the fixed hours of the business day (shift), and can work before after those hours of the business day (shift) for the rest of the working time; 4) divided regime of the business day when the work is performed on the same of the business day (shift) with a break for rest and meals, the duration whereof is longer than the maximum rest breaks and meal times; 5) individual working time regime (LC, Article 113).

41.The Law on Employment Support (which was valid until 1 July 2017) pregnant women, the child’s mother (adoptive mother), the child’s guardian, caretaker and persons who actually raise a child (adoptive child) under the age of 8 years or a disabled child (adoptive child) under the age of 18, and persons caring for the sick or disabled family members who have been established with the need for regular care or nursing, victims of human trafficking who have completed psychological social and/or vocational rehabilitation programmes are assigned to the group of individuals receiving additional support. These target groups could be subject to active labour market policy measures: employment subsidies, work rotation, public works, support for self-employment, vocational training. The Law on Employment (came into effect on 1 July 2017) provides that these groups of people may be trained in employment promotion programmes.

42.According to the Law on Social Enterprises, the child’s mother (adoptive mother), the child’s guardian, caretaker and persons who actually raise a child (adoptive child) under the age of 8 years or a disabled child (adoptive child) under the age of 18, and persons caring for the sick or disabled family members who have been established with the need for regular care or nursing (assistance), if the length of unemployment since the day of enrolment in the labour exchange is longer than 6 months, is attributed to target groups of persons employed in social enterprises. In such a case, a social enterprise may receive state aid related to employment of the abovementioned persons: partial compensation for wages and social security contributions, subsidy for job creation, adaptation of workplaces for disabled workers, subsidy for training of staff belonging to the target groups.

43.In order to additionally promote and protect maternity, amendments of the Law on Social Insurance of Sickness and Maternity that entered into effect from 1 July 2011 provided that the maternity (paternity) benefit was paid until the child reaches the age of one year or two years (previously — until the child is two years old). If the insured person chooses to receive maternity (paternity) benefit until the child reaches the age of two years, the amount of this allowance from the end of pregnancy and childbirth leave until the child reaches one year is 70 percent, and until the child reaches two years — 40 percent of the recipient’s compensated earnings. The amount of maternity (paternity) benefit from the end of pregnancy and childbirth leave until the child is one year old is 100 percent of the recipient’s compensated earnings, if the insured chooses to receive this benefit until the child is one year old. The amendment of the Law on Sickness and Maternity Social Insurance effective from 1 July 2014 provided that, if two or more children are born to an insured person or two or more children are adopted and the person is on the childcare leave, the maternity (paternity) benefit is increased taking into account the number of children born simultaneously or adopted, however, the total amount of benefits paid may not exceed 100 percent of the recipient’s compensated earnings. From 1 January 2017, the maternity (paternity) benefit is renamed to the childcare benefit.

44.Concerning parts 19 and 29 of the Recommendations for Lithuania. Information on the application of the temporary special measures pursuant to Article 4(1) of the Convention was provided in previous reports. There were no legal instruments for quantitative targets in the reporting period in order to increase the number of women in politics or in decision making in other organisations (including businesses). The amendment of the LEOWM was drafted in 2018, which would simplify the adoption of temporary special measures. The use of such measures can help women to enter or return to the labour market and promote the real equality of women and men in education, employment, participation in political or economic decision-making.

Article 5

45.Concerning part 21 of the Recommendations for Lithuania. During the implementation of the Action Plan, various educational events, seminars, training, awareness-raising campaigns aimed at eliminating the stereotyped roles of women and men were organised. On 1 January 2017, the new version of the LEO entered into effect, which expanded the competence of the Equal Opportunities Ombudsperson, in addition to providing preventive and educational activities, and promotion of equal opportunities. Project activities have been continuing since the establishment of the OEOO, but the legally established new functions of the Equal Opportunities Ombudsperson enable these activities to be conducted strategically and focused, contributing to the goals set out in Article 5 of the Convention to “change the social and cultural patterns of behaviour of men and women in order to avoid superstition, customs and all kinds of practices based on the idea of inferiority or superiority of one gender or stereotyped role for men and women”.

46.In 2016, in order to eliminate gender stereotypes and encourage media outlets to portray a positive image of women and equal status of women and men in private and public life, the Description of procedure for assessment of the contents of general education curriculum textbooks has been adopted that requires the content presented in textbooks to be fair in terms of gender, sexual orientation, beliefs or faith, while a stereotypical approach to different sexes must be avoided. To ensure this requirement, the textbook evaluation criterion is provided to ensure that text and video material should not contain negative gender stereotypes, and that girls and boys, women and men are represented impartially. Textbook publishers also take responsibility through their request to evaluate the textbooks so that their materials meet this criterion.

47.The following seminars were organised to ensure that textbook authors and content evaluators recognise gender stereotypes and avoid stereotypical approaches to different sexes: “Gender roles and stereotypes” (2015), “Gender stereotypes in textbooks and their possible impact” (2016), and “Learning without stereotypes” (2017) available in the virtual learning environment. The aforementioned measures have had a positive effect; this is evident as the textbook material submitted for evaluations since 2016 avoid negative stereotyped attitudes towards the different sexes. From 2019 the general education curricula will be updated. This will be done by evaluating textbooks and other materials in order to ensure that the assessment criterion on avoiding stereotyped attitudes towards the different gender is met — there will be no negative gender stereotypes in the text and video materials; girls and boys, women and men are to be represented impartially.

48.In order to implement the constitutional provision concerning the comprehensive protection of maternity, paternity and childhood, the Law on Strengthening Families was adopted in 2017. The purpose of this law is to create legal and organisational prerequisites for strengthening the family institution, to establish institutions ensuring the implementation of family policy, to define their main functions and to provide for the organisation of family strengthening with the help of a family policy formulation and implementation system. The above-mentioned law implements the principle of complementarity of paternity and maternity — in providing support and assistance to the family, the child’s natural need to have a father (adoptive father) and mother (adoptive mother) must be taken into account (Article 3(4)). It is envisaged that state and municipal institutions must ensure, in accordance with their competence, the conditions for responsible parenting and maternity, respect for life and human dignity at any stage of their life (Article 4(2)). Family strengthening is organised and implemented through an institutional framework for the formation and implementation of family policy, which consists of the Seimas, the National Family Council, the Government, ministries and other state institutions, the Commission on Family Policy, municipal institutions and bodies, municipal family councils. State and municipal institutions and authorities promote and support NGOs engaged in activities in the field of family strengthening, including traditional religious communities and societies in Lithuania (Article 7).

49.For the formation of a positive image of the family in society, dissemination of information about the sustainable life of families in society, every year the MoSSL organises a Family celebration, with the participation of the families of the country, public organisations and societies that unite and work with families. Participants of the event listen to speeches of experts, families share their experiences, participate in roundtables on the issues of paternity, maternity, child custody, adoption, visiting and foster family building, and events include entertainment. In order to acknowledge and honour the mothers who have raised many children, every year since 2004 on Mother's Day, the nominations for these mothers are presented to the President of the Republic of Lithuania who then awards the Medal of Merits for Lithuania to the nominees. The awards are granted to those mothers who gave birth, raised and educated seven and more children.

50.The MoSSL implements the facility “Complex Family Services”, which aims to enable the family to receive complex services, ensuring access to services as close as possible to the family’s place of residence, and to enable the family to cope with the difficulties and crises that it faces, and to help reconcile family and work commitments. The budget of the facility is 21.16 million euro, of which 19.16 million euro are EU funds. The implementation of the facility projects is funded to support the organisation, coordination and provision of family services such as positive parenting training, psychosocial assistance, family skills training and socio-cultural services, mediation services, and childcare services. The projects for the facility are implemented by all 60 municipal administrations along with NGO partners. It has been stipulated that NGOs must provide at least 75% of all services provided in the projects. Anticipated results: in implementing facility projects, 15 thousand individuals will receive complex family services for the family, integrated services for the family in the municipality will be developed, and the accessibility and quality of these services will be improved.

Article 6

51.Since 2002, the MoSSL has been providing financial support to the NGO projects that provide social assistance to people who have suffered and who could have been victims of trafficking. During the 2002–2017 period, a total more than 1 million euro has been allocated for the implementation of projects. Social assistance was provided for about 2.5 thousand persons who have suffered and could have suffered from human trafficking. The proportion of affected men and women who have been provided assistance has changed in recent years — before 2015 the number of affected women was 60–70% and from 2016 onwards — 45–50%.

52.In the 2016–2018 period, the state budget funds 5 NGO projects, 4 of which provide social assistance for women and men, 1 — only for men. Project promoters provide or arrange for complex social assistance (social services, temporary accommodation, psychological, healthcare, legal, educational assistance, services for integration into society and the labour market, and other necessary assistance according to the estimated need for social assistance by the victims) and victims — Lithuanian citizens at risk of being affected by trafficking in human beings (victims in Lithuania and abroad) and foreigners in Lithuania, regardless of whether the person agrees to cooperate with law enforcement authorities. NGO’s social assistance is coordinated with the assistance provided by other institutions and agencies (municipal, children’s rights protection, employment, law enforcement, educational institutions, consular offices, etc.) according to their competence. Particular attention is paid to victims of trafficking in human beings without gender segregation. Various state institutions cooperate with each other.

53.In order to strengthen coordination of joint activities of the municipalities and NGOs, providing assistance to victims of trafficking in human beings, the MoSSL together with the Lithuanian Caritas has prepared a sample model for the coordination of assistance to victims of trafficking in human beings within the municipality. In 2015, this model was presented to the municipalities as a recommendation, offering them to establish coordination groups for assistance, as well as training in 6 municipalities (in the major cities), in which more than 100 specialists from different fields participated.

54.Improvement of the CRC. The amendments adopted in 2012 to the CRC clarified the dispositions of the articles of the CRC and established in the articles of the CRC the purpose of trafficking in human beings to exploit the person for any purposes of exploitation (i.e. leaving the open list of purposes of exploitation in the dispositions of the above-mentioned articles), and it also established a possibility of relieving a victim of trafficking in human beings or the child purchase or sale from criminal liability for the criminal act which he was directly forced to commit. These amendments also clarified the disposition of Article 1471 of the CRC, by criminalising the exploitation for forced services and begging. In addition, Article 1472 was supplemented to the CRC, establishing criminal liability for the use of a person’s forced labour or services. The 2016 CRC amendments clarified the dispositions of Articles 147 and 157 of the CRC and established the aim of trafficking in human beings to exploit a person for forced and fictitious marriages (Annex 9).

55.Improving the mechanism for the identification and referral of victims of trafficking in human beings (legal regulation). In 2015, the Recommendations for the identification of victims of trafficking in human beings, pretrial investigation and inter-institutional co-operation were adopted, establishing the same criteria for the identification of victims of trafficking in human beings, that regulate the responsible institutions, agencies (police, prosecutor’s offices, State Border Guard Service under the MoI, MFA, children’s rights protection divisions, State Labour Inspectorate under the MoSSL, etc.) and organisations (the Vilnius Office of International Organisation for Migration and NGOs) in dealing with the victims of trafficking in human beings and providing assistance as well as recommendations for collecting evidence for pretrial investigation officers. These provisions were detailed in the legislation of the responsible institutions.

56.Training was provided for officials and professionals who may have to deal with victims of trafficking in human beings. Police and border guards were trained on how to communicate with such victims, their identification, information, and assistance; police and border guard investigators improved their qualifications in the field of pretrial investigation and collection of evidence.

57.Strengthening the coordination of the fight against trafficking in human beings. By implementing paragraph 56 of the Programme for the Development of Public Security in 2015–2025, in 2016 the Government approved the Inter-institutional Action Plan for the Implementation of the Programme for the Development of Public Security for the 2015–2025 period. One of the tasks of this Action Plan is to develop an effective fight against human trafficking. In 2016, the Action Plan on Combating Trafficking in Human Beings in 2017–2019 was adopted, which includes anti‑trafficking measures and actions to implement these objectives: to strengthen the coordination of the fight against trafficking in human beings, to improve the prevention of trafficking in human beings and pretrial investigation, to strengthen the provision of assistance to victims who are at high risk of suffering from the trafficking in human beings and to increase the competences and capacities of public authorities and institutions for the victims of trafficking in human beings. The measures and actions of the Plan for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings are implemented by the MoI and the Police Department, State Border Guard Service and the Migration Department under the MoI, MoSSL and the Lithuania Labour Exchange, State Children’s Rights Protection and Adoption Service and the State Labour Inspectorate under the MoSSL, MoES and EDC and Special Education and Psychological Centres, MFA, Prisons Department under the MoJ, NCA, Prosecutor General’s Office, municipalities and NGOs. The MoI together with other institutions have planned to allocate the necessary resources — for 26 out of 47 anti-trafficking measures, for the plan and actions (MI — 16 measures and actions (two of them will be implemented together with the Police Department under the MoI), and the MoI coordinates the implementation of the entire plan of combating trafficking in human beings, the MoSSL provide resources to 7 institutions, the MES together with other institutions — 5 measures and actions. The financing of measures and actions of both plans is provided.

58.In 2016, the institutional composition of the Commission for the Coordination of Trafficking in Human Beings was defined by establishing its tasks and functions, responsibilities, authorities of members, all state and municipal institutions and agencies whose representatives are included in the activities of this Commission, were instructed to plan anti-trafficking measures and actions and provide information to the Commissions on the measures and actions implemented, the results of combating human trafficking. It was established that the plan of combating trafficking in human beings will be prepared for coordination of activities of trafficking in human beings and the members of Commission according to their competence will coordinate the implementation of the Commission’s decisions in the delegating institution, authority or organisation.

59.Co-operation and coordination of the fight against trafficking in human beings was further intensified in the municipalities. The coordination of the ADSTRING, STROM I and STROM II projects within the MoI has strengthened the capacity of the municipalities to combat trafficking in human beings: prepared recommendations for the municipalities to organise the fight against trafficking in human beings, prepared an instruction for municipalities to co-ordinate the fight against trafficking in human beings and organised training. In the municipalities, the commissions for the coordination of trafficking in human beings (working groups) were set up, instructions were approved, measures were planned, and training was organised. The instructions provide that representatives of state and municipal institutions, municipal administrations, religious communities and associations and NGOs will participate in the mechanism for coordinating the municipal anti-trafficking activities.

60.Strengthening cooperation with non-traditional partners, through national and municipal mechanisms for coordinating the fight against trafficking in human beings St. Martha Initiative was developed (a global network of Catholic Churches and Police Chiefs against modern slavery), in particular through the provision of prevention and assistance to victims of trafficking in human beings and exploitation for forced labour or services, and the risk of victims to suffer such crimes. The MoI prepared and distributed methodological recommendations to the Church “The role of the Church in the fight against trafficking in human beings”.

61.Prevention. Every year, measures to prevent trafficking in human beings are widely implemented through the implementation of the abovementioned plans and international projects. The MoI organised a particularly extensive preventive action in 2017. It was attended by experts from state institutions, institutions and municipalities (including social workers, educational staff, children’s rights protection experts, officials working in municipalities), NGOs, and the Church. Intensive information on trafficking in human beings, its threats, assistance opportunities were disseminated for population and visitors of the major cities, Marijampolė and Tauragė, and the district municipalities of Telšiai, Utena, Jonava, Kaišiadorys and Raseiniai, where active recruitment of people, residents and guests was observed in 2016. The PayPost screens in the public transport and PayPost offices of AB Lietuvos Paštas departments featured video clips screened on billboards, in sub-municipal areas, public transport stations, educational and social services, health care institutions, territorial labour exchanges, churches, rural stores, etc. with subtitles intended to alert people about trafficking and four forms of exploitation: sexual exploitation, forced labour, forced criminal deeds and forced marriages. A total of 5,001 different posters were distributed to alert people about trafficking in the aforementioned four forms of exploitation. In addition, during the campaign 18,000 folding information cards were distributed about human trafficking and assistance provided in Lithuanian, English, and Russian to the most vulnerable people, including, due to the economic situation, lack of education, poor language skills, etc. the third-country nationals arriving to Lithuania for low-skilled work, whose travel and employment are organised by intermediaries. Municipal administrations of Vilnius, Kaunas, Klaipėda, Šiauliai, Panevėžys, Alytus, and Marijampolė cities, and of Tauragė, Telšiai, Utena, Jonava, Kaišiadorys, Kedainiai, Raseiniai, and Širvintos districts and others organised targeted preventive measures for groups at risk who could suffer from trafficking in human beings. Social workers of municipal administrations and institutions, police officers, clergy, and NGO representatives organised meetings with communities, interviewed people suffering from social exclusion and discussed human trafficking, issues of forced labour, explained to families about trafficking in human beings and its forms. In 2,000 meetings, the participation of 12,400 job-seekers was addressed to trafficking in human beings and recruitment on job-search portals, for the prevention of trafficking in human beings (“Stop the trafficking in human beings”, “Stop the trafficking in human beings in our country”, “Know the dangers of trafficking in human beings”, etc.) and more than 300 people were introduced to the most common forms of trafficking in human beings, their features and how not to become victims of these crimes. Also, information about trafficking in human beings has been made available to the population and visitors through the media and websites of institutions, bodies and organisations. Events on the fight against trafficking in human beings were held at educational institutions, children’s homes, employment centres, etc. According to the information from service providers, more than a million Lithuanians and visitors learned the information about trafficking in human beings.

62.Improvement of qualification. Officials and professionals who might be required to engage in interaction with the victims of trafficking in human beings, investigate trafficking in human beings or provide assistance to such persons, upgrade their qualifications each year. Officials and experts have upgraded their qualifications in inter-institutional, inter-sectoral and international training and other initiatives and in-service training. For example, an integrated (complex) training is being implemented at the Lithuanian Police School, where prospective police officers are trained to respond appropriately to cases of violence against individuals. Future police officers are trained to provide assistance to victims of violence, as well as tactics for professional ethics, psychological endurance, and communication with individual groups. Continuous training is organised for police officers who are likely to have contact with victims, aimed at raising awareness among officers about the needs of victims and ensuring that victims are treated impartially, respectfully and professionally. On 5 September 2017, the special education module programme “Prevention and Investigation of Trafficking in Human Beings” was approved. The purpose of the programme is to provide police officers with the theoretical knowledge and practical skills necessary for the prevention and investigation of trafficking in human beings. Officials of the State Border Guard Service under the MoI improve their qualifications in the course “Combating trafficking in human beings”. MoI officers, police and border guards improve qualifications in trainings organised by the CEPOL on anti- trafficking in the abovementioned projects.

63.Strengthening the monitoring of the fight against trafficking in human beings. In 2016, the Government defined the task of the National Rapporteur on the fight against trafficking in human beings (hereinafter the National Rapporteur). The National Rapporteur was charged with collecting and publishing statistics and other information on the situation of trafficking in human beings and the measures and actions against it, analysing and evaluating the results of it on the website of the MoI, preparing proposals for further progress in Lithuania in the fight against trafficking in human beings and to provide them to the MoI and the Commission. The MoI prepared and approved the Description of the procedure for the collection and publication of statistical data and other information on the situation of trafficking in human beings, measures against it and actions, and appointed a National Rapporteur.

64.In order to change the practice of widespread victim blaming in the media and society, and to change the prevailing belief that violence and the fight against it are the responsibility of the women who have been the victims of violence, the OOEO launched a project in 2017 funded by the European Commission “Stop Violence Against Women: from raising awareness to a zero-tolerance to victim blaming”.

65.Concerning part 23 of the Recommendations for Lithuania. While the debate on the Istanbul Convention is pending, national legislation is used to combat violence and implements national measures that contribute to reducing domestic violence and violence against women, improving the quality of assistance provided to victims of domestic violence and violence against women, increasing the scope of this assistance (for example, by establishing a system of support for all women who have suffered from domestic violence) and its funding by improving the means of preventing violence by analysing the experience of the Parties to the Convention.

66.In 2016, in order to ensure more effective prevention of domestic violence and all assistance and protection for victims of violence, including children, the Seimas adopted a resolution proposing to the Government, ministries, institutions under the ministries and the Association of Municipalities of Lithuania for better assistance to children affected by domestic violence, improvement of the collection of statistics on the prevalence of domestic violence, strengthening of inter-institutional cooperation, improving the efficiency of assistance for victims of domestic violence, improving the prevention of domestic violence, raising public awareness and intolerance to domestic violence, protecting victims, cooperation between municipalities, best practice exchange and other issues. The implementation of the provisions of this resolution contributes to the implementation of the provisions of the Istanbul Convention.

67.To comply with the provisions of the Istanbul Convention, a draft amendment to the resolution of the Government will be submitted in 2018. This draft amendment will propose a new wording for the programme of 2014–2020 for the prevention of domestic violence and the provision of assistance to the victims of violence in the near future. The aim is to supplement the programme with the provisions on all types and forms of violence against women, development of a specialised assistance system and its provision.

68.The abovementioned programme provides for measures to strengthen the women’s protection and assistance opportunities in the context of domestic violence. The main objectives of the programme are: 1) educating the public on prevention and intervention issues, teaching to recognise the manifestations of violence, and developing an intolerance for all forms of violence; 2) improving the competence of professionals involved in the prevention and provision of assistance to children and adults affected by violence; 3) improving the system of providing assistance to victims of violence and their families, improving the quality and accessibility of services; 4) strengthening inter-institutional cooperation between state institutions, municipalities and NGOs. The programme is supplemented by the objective “To ensure the protection against all forms of violence against women, the domestic violence which disproportionately affects women” and by means of: 1) to carry out legislation analysis in the area of the domestic violence and to make proposals on the possibility of applying a warrant for protection against domestic violence in all cases, including the cases related with more effective eviction of perpetrators from the premises owned by a woman or a family, punishment for perpetrators and tightening of punishment; 2) organising seminars, lectures for women’s legal education (legal remedies, legal proceedings, etc.); 3) to increase the funding of Specialised Assistance Centres (hereinafter the SHCs).

69.In implementing the requirement provided for in Article 1(3) of the Resolution of the Seimas on protection against violence “to designate a responsible institution (Statistics Lithuania) to draw up a survey of all areas related to the issues of domestic violence, collection of statistical data on domestic violence and the methodology for analysing these data, setting criteria that are important to assess the effectiveness of the prevention against domestic violence, to appoint a person responsible for coordinating the analysis of data on domestic violence and coordinating this data in the Office of the Government and to take into account the proposals prepared by the inter-institutional working group on the preparation of statistics on domestic violence, a list of statistical indicators related to domestic violence was approved (hereinafter the List of Indicators) in 2017. Statistics Lithuania publishes statistical information on the reports of domestic violence registered by police, reports of recorded crimes, victims of violence, assistance for the victims of violence given by the institutions included in the List of Indicators responsible for preparation of statistics within the deadlines and are announced on the official statistics portal (

70.On the basis of the criminal record data of the MoI, the Informatics and Communications Department under the MoI (hereinafter the ITC) draws up a monthly report on the data of criminal offenses recorded in pretrial investigation institutions and persons suspected (charged) as perpetrators of criminal acts related to domestic violence and publish it online on (Annexes No. 11, 12). Data on reports of domestic violence are recorded in the Police Information System Register of Events recorded by police.

71.In accordance with the rules of the SACs selection, the MoSSL selects and analyses the information provided by the SACs about the persons registered with the SACs (reported by the police, contacted independently), the recipients of specialised complex assistance (categorised by gender, age and family composition), nature of assistance, etc. From 2017, Statistics Lithuania provides information on the number of SACs and persons who have experienced domestic violence and persons who have received specialised assistance by their gender and age.

72.From 2012, throughout Lithuania the SACs provide specialised, integrated assistance to people experiencing domestic violence (more than 80% of those who have experienced domestic violence are women). If necessary, the SACs cooperate with the Children’s Rights Protection Division (from 1 July 2018 — the State Children’s Rights Protection and Adoption Service under the MoSSL), their employees, municipalities, sub-municipal areas and institutions.

73.In order to provide specialised complex assistance, the SACs’ funding has increased from 168 thousand euro in 2012 up to 750 thousand euro in 2018.

74.Throughout the territory of the Republic of Lithuania there are women’s crisis centres that provide assistance to female victims of violence experienced from their spouses and partners. Women’s crisis centres are working on critical crisis intervention and prevention, providing immediate and continued support to women who have experienced violence. Organisations act as lobbyists in order to improve the legal framework of Lithuania in the area of the combating violence against women, to formulate appropriate policies and implement good practices. Organisations can also provide temporary shelter for women who are subjected to domestic violence.

75.Victims of domestic violence can stay in municipally operating crisis centres, temporary accommodation establishments for mothers and children. In 2017, there were 49 crisis centres in Lithuania with 790 places for accommodation.

76.Concerning part 25 of the Recommendations for Lithuania. The Law on Protection against Domestic Violence does not distinguish between victims on the basis of gender, however, the gender difference is emphasised in the implementation of the strategy for combating domestic violence. With regard to the implementation of this strategy, the focus on gender disparities in the country is made within the activity of the SACs — the services are provided and the general concept of activities are focused on helping women.

77.In practice, the situation is that victims of domestic violence in most cases (80%) are women, and hence the vulnerability of the victim is, in any case, judged according to gender differences. In the criminal proceedings (CCP, Article 55(4), Article 185), victims of domestic violence are classified as particularly vulnerable victims, therefore, the laws provide procedural privileges and additional safeguards for these victims. Pretrial investigation of criminal offenses committed on the basis of sex, i.e. crimes and misdemeanours against a person’s freedom of sexual self-determination and sexual inviolability, cases of domestic violence, trafficking in human beings, gaining of profit from another person’s prostitution and involvement in prostitution or the cases related to discrimination or hatred based on sex, victims may be subject to special conditions of interviews (in such cases one or more provisions of Article 186 of the CRC may be applicable), the victim may request that the interview be conducted by the person of the same sex (CCP, Article 185(2)). According to the Recommendations on the assessment of the special protection needs of victims, approved in 2016, criminal activities that are related to violence and other types of gender-based exploitation and discrimination are attributed to higher risk group of criminal acts. The victims of such acts, taking into account the nature of criminal activities and aspects of vulnerability of the victim, are recommended the following special protection measures: participation of accompanying person, interview by an official of the same sex, interview conducted by a specialist, all procedural steps taken by the same officer, participation of an authorized representative, interviewing no more than once, audio and video recording during the interview, etc.

78.Concerning part 27 of the Recommendations for Lithuania. On 13 July 2012, amendments to the CRC entered into effect regarding the purchase or sale of people and the purchase or sale of a child (CRC, Articles 147 and 157). The provisions of the articles were significantly extended by the prohibition on selling, buying, otherwise transferring or acquiring, recruiting, transporting or keeping a person or a child in captivity for slavery or under conditions similar to slavery, for prostitution, other forms of sexual exploitation, forced services, including begging, committing a criminal offense or for other exploitation purposes. In addition, the criminal law was supplemented by a new Article 1472, which provides for criminal liability for the use of a person’s forced labour or services, as well as the extension of the provision of Article 1471 of the CRC (exploitation for forced labour or services) involving the use of a person’s certain services, including begging. On 25 May 2016, the Law on Amending the CRC entered into effect. By this amendment the disposition of Article 147of the CRC (trafficking in human beings) was explicitly supplemented with two purposes — forced or fictitious marriage, for the commission of trafficking in human beings. Similarly, the composition of the crime stipulated in Article 157 of the CRC (purchase or sale of a child) was supplemented. In addition, Article 157 of the CRC also mentions unlawful adoption as one of the possible criminal purposes of the child’s purchase or sale. Improving the quality of state-guaranteed legal aid is one of the priorities of the Government. According to the implementation plan of the Government’s programme, it is planned to set up a system of quality assurance of state-guaranteed legal aid by the third quarter of 2020. The development of the use of electronic means in the field of state-guaranteed legal aid includes the formation of the Legal Information and Legal Aid Information System (TEISIS).

Article 7

79.The current legal regulation of the Republic of Lithuania gives women equal conditions with men to participate in elections at different levels and in the political life of the state. The election of the President of the Republic of Lithuania has been won by a woman two times in a row. In the elections to the European Parliament in 25 May 2014, 2 of 11 places designated to Lithuania were won by women. 30 women and 111 men were elected to the Seimas for the period 2016–2020. Compared to the previous term of office of the Seimas in 2012–2016, the number of women in the Seimas slightly decreased: in 2012, 33 women were elected (Annexes 14, 15).

80.In the 2011–2017 period, the leaders of four political parties were women (in 2011–2017, the total number of registered political parties was 37), and one woman heads a political party in 2018 (in 2018, the number of registered parties is 28). In the Government, two women were entrusted with leadership of the MoES and the Ministry of Culture. The Civil Servants Register data for 2011–2017 on the employment of women and men in civil service is presented in Annex 13.

81.In implementing the measures of the Fourth Programme, the aim of a balanced participation of women and men in decision-making and in the highest positions was being further pursued. In order to promote women’s motivation and ability in decision-making and to build a female career friendly environment, the following were organised: businesswomen and society leader awards, women’s leadership conferences, the women’s information portal, activities of women’s political groups aimed at increasing the participation of women in politics at local and national levels, raising awareness among women politicians and promoting influence on political decision-making in the area of gender equality, regardless of political views.

82.In 2017, a non-profit agency under the MoE, Enterprise Lithuania, organised 8 women’s entrepreneurship events with the participation of 185 women. The target regional events took place in Šiauliai — mentoring and motivational events for women were held at the Spiečius Collaboration Centre. On 6 December 2017, for the fourth time, the MoE organised an annual Women’s Entrepreneurship Promotion Conference “VIS‘os: Verslios. Išmanios. Socialios.” (Everywoman: Entrepreneurs. Intelligent. Connected.), introducing entrepreneurs to new opportunities for engagement in social business, sharing success stories, taking part in discussions, and gaining new experiences in the skills development workshops. Enterprise Lithuania provided consulting for women’s entrepreneurship, financial literacy and other competencies. In 2017, it provided 3,014 consultations, of which 46 percent were for women and 54 percent for men.

83.In 2017, the Ministry of Transport and Communications made a gender-based analysis of the managing and steering boards of the companies under its supervision. The analysis showed that women’s participation in these boards being examined has increased, however men’s participation still dominates.

84.On 19 January 2018, a draft law amending the Law on Civil Service was registered by the Seimas, which proposed a change of legal regulation of civil service so that it would become attractive, modern, depoliticised and effective. The draft law proposes to provide a new incentive — up to 5 paid days off (but no more than 10 business days a year) or shorter working hours accordingly. It also proposes to regulate the remote work of public servants. It is considered that the proposed provisions can also contribute to a more flexible balance of the private life and work of civil servants.

85.In Lithuania, women belonging to ethnic minorities take an active part in the Lithuanian social, cultural life and decision-making process related to the protection of the rights of national minorities. More than half of the members of the Council of National Communities under the DoNM functioning under the Government are women. Acting as an advisory body, the Council of National Communities represents national minorities in matters concerning the coordination of policy of national minorities in Lithuania. Women belonging to national minorities are actively involved in community life and are concerned with the fostering of national identity (language, traditions, and national heritage) and its dissemination throughout the country. About 300 NGOs of national minorities actively work in Lithuania. There are also women’s organisations in Lithuania — the Ukrainian Women’s Union of Lithuania, the Lithuanian Women’s Society of Poland, the Women’s Entrepreneurs Association of Lithuanian Ethnic Groups and others. The latter Association is actively involved in projects aimed at fostering, developing and supporting the activities of women from ethnic minority groups, which are linked to the business organisation and development, and is a member of the European Women’s Migrant Network.

Article 8

86.In Lithuania, women can represent the Republic of Lithuania on an international scale and participate in the activities of international organisations on equal terms with men, without any discrimination. By the end of 2016, women accounted for 59.3 percent of all MFA Personnel. Women also accounted for 51.6 percent of all diplomats (persons having diplomatic ranks) of the Republic of Lithuania. Women held 54 percent of all leading positions in the MFA, of which women led 55.4 percent of all sections and 29.4 percent of all departments. Women also led 25.9 percent of all diplomatic and consular representations of the Republic of Lithuania. Women accounted for 27.5 percent persons who have the highest diplomatic ranks of the Republic of Lithuania.

87.According to the data of the period of 2011–2017, the number of the military and civil non-diplomatic staff of the National Defence System working in international military and defence institutions and national representations was 191, including 10 women (5.2 percent). According to the data of the period of 2014–2017, the number of the military and civil staff working in foreign representations in Lithuania was 33, including 8 women. From 2011 to 2017, the number of women in international operations was 65 (3.21 percent). The percentage of women was low; however, it was average in proportion to women and men in the military. For example, in 2017, 17.7 percent of women and 82.3 percent of men were employed in the National Defence System. The biggest rate of female employees was 19 percent in 2014. In 2015, it dropped potentially due to the introduction of permanent compulsory military service (see Annexes 16–20).

Article 9

88.Information on the implementation of Article 9 of the Convention in Lithuania was presented in previous reports. The legislation that regulates this area has not changed.

89.Concerning part 31 of the Recommendations for Lithuania. Lithuania ratified the 1961 United Nations Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness. The Law on the Supplement and Amendment of Articles 18 and 40 of the Law on Citizenship, both which came into effect on 25 May 2013, made national law to fully comply with the provisions of the Convention. According to the provisions of the previous Law on Citizenship, a child born to a stateless person residing in Lithuania acquires the citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania irrespective of whether he was born in or outside the territory of the Republic of Lithuania (if he does not acquire the citizenship of another state). On 9 May 2013, the amended Law on Citizenship introduced more favourable conditions for the naturalization of stateless persons who had not acquired citizenship of another state, which is subject to a general condition for the lawful permanent residence in Lithuania for the past 10 years (the requirement of living in Lithuania is 5 years). These provisions apply to all stateless persons born in the territory of the Republic of Lithuania, without distinguishing any individual groups such as the Roma people (hereinafter Roma), therefore, statistics on the ethnicity of the persons who acquired citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania is not collected. The statistics of stateless persons are provided in Annexes 21 and 22.

90.The illegal foreigners and asylum seekers (except unaccompanied minors and foreigners who have been transferred to Republic of Lithuania in cooperation with EU Member States and third countries resettled at the Refugee Reception Centre) are accommodated at the Foreigners Registration Centre of the State Border Guard Service (hereinafter referred to as the FRC SBGS). The FRC SBGS accommodates a small number of women, especially those who are victims or witnesses of violence. In 2015, 637 foreigners have been accommodated in the FRC, of which 91 were women; in 2016 — 440 foreigners, of which 72 were women (of which 5 were victims of violence); in 2017, 383 foreigners of which 69 were women (of which 7 were victims of violence); in 2018 (according to the data of February 19) — of which 5 were women. The FRC officials have participated in training (for example, in training organised by the UNHCR once a month at the Border Guard School) on the peculiarities of women’s counselling: the recommendations are followed that a woman must be interviewed by female officers, if possible without uniforms, in a confidential and safe environment. The FRC Investigation Department also has female officers working with women.

Article 10

91.In 2014, in order to ensure gender balance in the highest academic positions and scientific management positions in science and higher education institutions, the MoES approved the Guidance on Ensuring Equal Opportunities in Lithuanian Research and Higher Education Institutions to provide institutions with suggestions on possible measures for systematic integration of the gender perspective into all areas of the institutions’ policies and activities; improve gender balance in different fields of science and increase the number of women at the highest scientific and administrative posts. The MES is looking for ways to introduce incentives for research and education institutions in implementing advanced strategies for managing human resources (including equal opportunities for women and men).

92.During the reporting period in Lithuania, female researchers accounted for 62.59 percent of all researchers. Most of the women were occupied in social sciences (67.9 percent) and in humanities (66 percent), the least participating in technology sciences (36.37 percent) and physical sciences (39.17 percent). Most women in category ‘A’ (professors, chief research workers) were in humanities (57 percent) and social sciences (54 percent), the lowest number — in physical sciences (10 percent) and technology sciences (13 percent). In terms of gender balance between university rectors, the number of women in 2017 was 11 percent, and among directors of colleges — 41 percent. In the universities, female vice-rectors accounted for 47 percent. Women holding deans’ positions in colleges comprised of 71 percent, and in universities — 33 percent.

93.In Lithuania, three of the fourteen state universities (Vilnius University, Mykolas Riomeris University, Šiauliai University) have centres for gender studies, which are engaged in studies and research in the gender equality field. Gender equality is taught at Vilnius University (as an optional subject), at Vytautas Magnus University (as a specialty subject in sociology), and at Šiauliai University (as an elective subject for Erasmus students). During lectures, students are taught how to perceive gender-based stereotypes of culture that influence the behaviour of women and men and their social choices.

94.According to the data of the Education Register, the scholarships were paid for 1296 students in 2015, in 2016 — for 1076 students, and in 2017 — for 880 students. Currently, the Education Register announces that the number of students receiving scholarships in 2018 is 628 students. The amount of scholarship is 115.85 EUR per month.

95.In Lithuania, according to the data of 1 September 2017, pre-primary education institutions were attended by 11 Roma, and the pre-school education groups were attended by 4 Roma; there were 237 girls and 194 boys (431 Roma) in general education schools, 7 boys and 15 girls (22 Roma) studied in vocational schools.

96.Concerning part 33 of the recommendations for Lithuania. In 2017, to implement the Action Plan for Roma Integration into the Lithuanian Society in 2015‑2020, the MoES strengthened the training of teachers, school managers, education assistant experts and experts in the education departments of municipal administrations and began to organise long-term activities aimed at improving competences, developing skills for understanding the needs of Roma children and organising inclusive education in the light of cultural diversity. The EDC organised a training cycle. Participants in these training courses are represented by school teams consisting of a teacher, an assistant specialist for pupil and a representative of the administration. It is planned to carry out such type of training in 2018–2020. These training courses combine educational activities for equal opportunities and non‑discrimination issues involving senior pupils and teachers from schools. In these educational activities, modern forms are applied with the aim to reduce the negative attitudes towards the Roma, to adopt differences, to develop the critical attitude of students and teachers towards stereotypes related to the depiction of the Roma not only in the media, but also in the Lithuanian ethno-culture.

97.The MES, in cooperation with DoNM, engaged in the project “Local Roma Platforms — a Way to Cooperate with Local Governments” initiated a separate activity — a long-term consultant’s work with the whole school and local community in building a new approach to the integration of Roma in the Eišiškės Stanislovas Rapolionis Gymnasium, Šalčininkai district. The DoNM ensures the activities of a Roma mediator, whose main task is to ensure the good attendance of Roma children at Stanislovas Rapolionis Gymnasium. For consistency, the same consultant will develop practical guidelines for working with Roma families having pre-school and school-age children. The purpose of the recommendations is to increase the efficiency of educational work with Roma families with school-aged children and integration of Roma children by engaging in the life of the school and the local community.

98.Women belonging to ethnic minorities are actively involved in the activities of national minorities at Saturday/Sunday schools; they are concerned with the development of cultural competence of children and young people of national minorities.

Article 11

99.In 2016, in order to modernise the labour market regulation, the law package “Labour Relations and the Legal-Administrative Model of the State Social Insurance” was adopted, which consists of three basic laws — the LC, the Law on Employment and the Law on Unemployment Social Insurance (as amended, entered into effect on 1 July 2017). The LC simplifies the procedure for recruiting and dismissing employees, introduces more flexible regulation of working time and more types of different employment contracts (fixed-term, temporary-work, job-sharing, multi-employer employment, apprenticeship contracts). For working parents, the new regulation offers a more flexible framework for working relationships and work schedules that allow the balance of family, studies and work. The Law on Unemployment Social Insurance: 1) the unemployment insurance benefit was increased — the fixed part of the benefit is 30 percent of the minimum monthly salary (MMS); the variable part of the benefit depends directly on the insured income of the unemployed; the maximum payment amount increased by 75 percent of the national average wage (NAW); 2) there was an increase in the coverage of unemployment insurance beneficiaries after setting a requirement for a shorter qualifying period (12 months over 30 months); 3) payment period lengthened from 6 to 9 months. The Law on Employment extends the scope of application the Law on Support to Employment, classifying all types of employment in the same law, establishing liability for illegal, undeclared and unregistered self-employment activities, and violations of the procedure for the employment of foreigners. There are also improvements in employment support measures.

100.In Lithuania, during the period of 2011–2017, the employment rate increased by 10.2 percentage points, from 60.2 percent in 2011 up to 70.4 percent in 2017. During this period, the female employment rate increased by 10 percentage points. The female employment rate is slightly lower than the overall employment level (Annex 23). During the analysed period, the unemployment rate decreased more than twice, from 15.4 percent in 2011 to 7.1 percent in 2017. Since 2011, the female unemployment rate has fallen by 7.2 percent, in 2017 it reached 5.7 percent and was 1.4 percentage points lower than the total unemployment rate (Annex 24). During the 2011–2017 period, 2149 thousand jobseekers registered in the territorial Labour Exchanges, of which 44 percent were women. Unemployment rate among people aged 15–29 in 2010 amounted to 27.2 percent and in 2017 — 8.6 percent. Accordingly, the young women unemployment rate of 22 percent in 2010 dropped to 7.1 percent in 2017. The unemployment rate among the young men fell from 31.7 percent to 9.7 percent. The data of the Statistics Lithuania on the average gross wages and salaries in the economy of the country are presented in Annex 25.

101.Concerning part 35 of the recommendations for Lithuania. The LC and the LEOWM provide that women and men must be paid equal pay for equal and similar work. According to the new LC, employers who have an average of more than fifty employees must undertake the measures for implementation and enforcement of the principles of the equal opportunities policy. During the 2015–2017 period, the State Labour Inspectorate performed 193 inspections on the implementation of equal rights of women and men under the scope of labour law regulations. During the implementation of the Fourth Programme Action Plan, educational, informational or training activities aimed at reducing the gender pay gap were carried out to address labour market segregation issues. Consultations were organised on the provisions of the new LC, including information campaigns, such as selection of the most equal workplace, the most equal municipality, supporting the activities of women’s clubs, the operation of the electronic network of women’s organisations and the information portal In December 2017, the MoSSL together with the MoE, MoES and other institutions organised an expert seminar on gender segregation issues in education, training and labour market in order to reduce gender segregation and its possible consequences in the future.

102.Measures for the integration of the Roma women. In 2011–2017, Lithuania implemented the plan of action of the Roma integration into the Lithuanian society for the year 2012–2014 and started implementing the measures of the action plan for the integration of the Roma into the Lithuanian society for 2015–2020. In 2013, the project “Promoting the Roma Women’s Entrepreneurship through the Development of Traditional Crafts”, with the main idea to teach Roma women to create traditional Romani handicrafts with the aim of selling them online, was supported. The project lasted until 2015. In 2014, during the thematic visit of the Council of Europe experts to Lithuania, a seminar “Empowering Roma women and gender in the policy of Roma integration”, meetings with representatives of the state, municipalities and the NGOs took place. Based on expert recommendations, a section on the situation of Roma women has been prepared in the Action Plan for the integration of the Roma into Lithuanian society for the year 2015–2020.

103.In 2016–2017, measures for the Roma women were included in two EU-funded projects: “The Roma Platform — a Road to Cooperation with municipalities”, implemented by the DoNM, and the project “Working Together with the Roma — New Job Opportunities and Challenges”, implemented by the Centre for Roma Society and their partners. The main objective of the first project was to create a mechanism for cooperation between the Roma communities and local authorities, which ensures the effective inclusion of local municipality in the process of Roma integration. In the course of the project, Roma platforms were set up in five municipalities of Lithuania, which are home to the largest Roma communities, and in 2016, Roma women worked as coordinators of the platforms in Vilnius, Panevėžys and Šiauliai; in 2017–2018, Roma women work as coordinators of the Roma platform in Šalčininkai district and Panevėžys.

104.In 2017, the study “Early Marriages in the Lithuanian Roma Community: Situation Analysis, Conclusions and Recommendations” was performed. The aim of the study was to analyse the international law and the national law of the Republic of Lithuania regulating the institute of marriage. The main focus was made on an in‑depth analysis on the concept of early marriages in the Roma community, an understanding of the attitudes of the community members, and the main causes and consequences of early marriages. In 2017, to implement the recommendations in the study, the sexual education training and early marriage prevention training, involving 30 boys and girls, were organised for the Roma youth in the Aukštaitija region. In addition, the project provided for the training for Roma women on human rights issues. From 2016, the project “Working Together with the Roma — New Opportunities and Challenges” which focuses on empowering women is being implemented. The project includes the organisation of an exhibition of Roma women’s embroidery works, the activities of the Women’s Club, and gender equality training, in which 45 people participated from 2016 to 2017. 14 Roma women have been involved in various enabling activities.

105.The Law on Social Services establishes the equal right for individuals to receive social services regardless of gender. Persons (families) are allocated and provided social services that are in line with the interests of the individual and the family and the needs identified, in order to enable the person (family) to develop and strengthen the abilities and possibilities to independently solve their social problems, to maintain social relations with society, and to help overcome social exclusion. The law provides for the possibility for a person (family) to choose the type of social services and place of their provision (at their own home, community or institution) according to their interests and needs. The development of social services in Lithuania is aimed at meeting the needs of the individual and the family, encouraging the development of community-based services, and helping families to stay active in the labour market and participate in community life. Municipalities ensuring the provision of social services to the local population are responsible for assessing and analysing the needs of local people, determining the scope and types of social services, planning and organising social services, establishing social service institutions. Municipalities are increasing the number of services offered in the individual’s home (home help, social care, integral care (social and health services), non-stationary social services institutions (respite service, day-care and support, social skills development and support, psychosocial help, etc.). From 2013, home-based integrated care (nursing and care) projects are being implemented, thereby increasing the ability of family members to coordinate family and work commitments in the home-based care of the elderly and the disabled. The MoSSL financially supports the social care provided by the municipalities for people with severe disabilities, complex services for families, child care in day-care centres for children.

Article 12

106.Health laws do not discriminate on the grounds of gender. Every person, regardless of gender, can use health care services in Lithuania, including participation in preventive programmes. In Lithuania, the programme for the selection and prevention measures of persons prone to cardiovascular diseases in the high-risk group is further implemented (Annex 31). In addition, the Cervical Cancer Prevention Programme and the Breast Cancer Prevention Programme are continuing (Annex 32). Preventive health check-ups can be obtained from the general practitioner or obstetrician-gynaecologist in primary health care centres. Vaccination is one of the most reliable preventive measures in controlling some infectious diseases including sexually transmitted infections. From 1 September 2016, a new vaccine has been included in the Lithuanian preventive vaccine calendar — 11-year-old girls are vaccinated against the human papillomavirus infection. In the near future, the volume of vaccination is expected to reach more than 90 percent.

107.To guarantee women’s ability to use high-quality free health care services during pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum period, the project “Improvement of Pregnancy, Maternal and New-borns Health Care in Lithuania” was implemented during the period of 2012–2017 as part of the programme for collaboration of the Republic of Lithuania and the Swiss Confederation. New-borns and their mothers receive the same high-quality and top-notch modern services regardless their place of residence — in the city or in a remote area of the country. To achieve this, Lithuanian and Swiss funding of 27 million euro was used.

108.Lithuanian hospitals that provide health care services for pregnant women and new-borns were equipped with essential medical equipment, equipment for screening test for new-borns and the latest technology for the provision of specialised obstetric and neonatal services worth more than 21.4 million euro. Three modern, spacious and comfortable reanimobiles with modern equipment specifically designed for the transportation of new-borns were provided to the three largest Lithuanian hospitals: the Children’s Hospital, Affiliate of Vilnius University Hospital Santaros Klinikos, the Hospital of the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences Kaunas Clinics and the Klaipėda University Hospital.

109.In 2015, a total of 72 diagnostic and treatment methods for obstetrics and neonatology, which are guided by various healthcare professionals, were developed. 4,257 participants from 32 Lithuanian hospitals upgraded their qualification in modern training. For all training activities, as much as 2.1 million euro were allocated. The information system for health data processing for women before and after pregnancy and new-borns was created. The successful perinatal system which is based on the regionalization principle has yielded good results: mortality rates of women before and after pregnancy have stabilised and amounted to 6.5 per 100 thousand live births; compared with 2000, when it was 11.8 (Annex 33).

110.In order to ensure proper nutrition from birth, the Baby Friendly Hospital (hereinafter the BFH) initiative is being developed in Lithuania. A BFH or a commitment to become such a hospital is one of the quality indicators for an institution which provides obstetricians, maternity and new-born health care as provided by the Description of the health care provision for women before and after pregnancy and new-borns. The BFH distinction is given after the assessment of any institution in accordance with the provisions of the Description of procedure for the evaluation of in-patient personal health institutions under the BFH requirements. Currently, out of 28 hospitals with obstetrics units, 16 are granted the distinction of being BFHs and 1 hospital is committed to become a BFH.

111.An updated Lactation Promotion Committee is continuing its activities. One of the main goals is to promote the development of the BFH. Lactation promotion and expert training activities are organised and implemented in accordance with the law.

112.Concerning part 33 of Recommendations for Lithuania. Personal and public health care institutions have been actively carried out the health education and teaching of pre-school and school-age children and children at risk, in order to ensure adequate age-appropriate education for boys and girls about sexual and reproductive health and rights, responsible sexual behaviour, how to prevent teenage pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases, and tuberculosis prevention (Annexes 27 and 28).

113.To implement the facility for the development and implementation of the model for youth-driven health services (hereinafter the YFHCS) of the 2009–2014 programme of the Norwegian Financial Mechanism, a YFHCS model was developed and implemented by 12 municipalities in the 2014–2016 period. It covers 4 priority service areas: improving mental health, improving sexual and reproductive health, promoting healthy nutrition, and preventing the external causes of mortality. The YFHCS covers health promotion, prevention, treatment, monitoring and counselling and meets the criteria specified by the World Health Organisation, such as availability (free or affordable services, quick and easy registration with or no registration, short waiting times from registration to the provision of services), non-discrimination, confidentiality, privacy, compliance of needs, competence and safety. The implementation of the YFHCS model in municipalities includes:

•The establishment of the YFHCS coordination centre, introduction of the YFHCS coordination and case management function in the municipality. The YFHCS coordinator, along with his other functions, is organising the “low-threshold”, case management and health services, i.e. assessing the health needs of the arrived young person, providing a plan for the provision of services, helping the young person in contacting health care institutions or other non‑health institutions and maintaining regular contact with the young person until his/her health problem is resolved;

•The establishment of the YFHCS institutional and functional network in the municipality, whose mission is to provide health services (health promotion, prevention, treatment, monitoring, counselling) to young people, is described in 6 formalised YFHCS algorithms (detailing which experts, in which institutions, as well as when and what kind of target services for groups of young people are provided). One of the algorithms is to reduce the negative health effects of sexually transmitted diseases and unplanned pregnancies. It can be found;

•The management of the national innovative youth health web-portal,, where young people can find reliable, systematic, easily accessible and appealing information provided by experts for health promotion and empowering young people to choose a healthy lifestyle. The following sections are dedicated for reproductive health in the portal: “Contraception” (, “Sexual relations” (, and “Sexually transmitted diseases” (

114.In addition, the municipalities that implement the YFHCS model organise training for supervisors, youth events, and parenting training (for example, how to talk with young people about sexual and reproductive health issues). Although the YFHCS model was only released in September 2015, the YFHCS services have been received by 4,760 persons, and nearly 55,000 young people (14–29 years old) participated in health promotion events and training. The number of portal visitors has reached almost 36 thousand and is steadily increasing. Although the implementation of the projects ended on 30 April 2017, all 12 municipalities are committed to continuing these activities and are successfully doing so. Furthermore, in order to ensure the continuity of the initiated activities and the development of the YFHCS, the Centre for Health Education and Prevention has been assigned to serve as the portal administrator and the regional and national portal coordinator.

115.Concerning part 37 of the Recommendations for Lithuania. Legislative proposals that limit women’s right to safe and legal abortion, were not adopted in 2011–2017. On 14 September 2016, the Seimas passed the Law on Assisted Insemination. In 2014, the Lithuanian Obstetrics and Gynaecology Society updated the Methodology for diagnosis and treatment of infertility, followed by all healthcare professionals. On 14 January 2015, this methodology was published on the MoH website:

116.Reproductive health services provided by family doctors gynaecologists are free of charge and are accessible to all insured patients, including those insured from state funds. A family doctor, obstetrician, or gynaecologist whom a patient is visiting, can provide information on modern contraceptive methods and prescribe them. The Contraceptive methodology prepared by the members of the Lithuanian Obstetrician Gynaecologists Society was published on the MoH website at the end of 2016. It is available to all healthcare professionals. A significant decrease in the number of abortions at the requested by women can also be considered as an indirect indicator of an increase in commonly used methods of contraception. During the last 7 years, the rate of abortions at a woman’s request has dropped more than one and a half times (Annex 29). The number of young women (15–19 years old) giving birth is dropping (Annex 30).

117.In 2016, a market and public opinion research company, Spinter Tyrimai, commissioned by the MoH, conducted a study on the awareness and availability of contraceptives. The study found that women aged 18–35, respondents with top-level education, and metropolitan residents know more about contraception options. According to the study, male contraceptives are known by 97 percent, hormonal contraceptive pills by 57 percent, hormonal uterine spirals by 41 percent, and hormonal emergency contraception by 36 percent of the respondents. Higher availability of contraceptives was reported by respondents of 26–35 years of age and urban people. 43 percent of the respondents indicated that they have access to many of the classic or even the most modern contraceptives, and only 1 percent of respondents reported difficulty in accessing contraceptives. 45 percent of respondents found this question to be irrelevant. Almost half (48 percent) of the respondents who reported difficulty in accessing contraceptives have said that modern contraceptives are too expensive. 29 percent of respondents stated that there was a lack of information on these tools. 16 percent said that the number of facilities where they can conveniently obtain contraceptives is insufficient or too few.

Article 13

118.Families raising children in Lithuania are supported by cash benefits. According to the Law on Children’s Benefits, persons raising children and (or) guardians are paid the following benefits from the state budget of the Republic of Lithuania: a one-time benefit upon birth or adoption of a child (11 BSB ), child benefit (0.79 BSB), additional child benefit depending on their age (BSB 0.4–0.75), a one-time benefit for a pregnant woman (2 BSB), benefit for a child of a soldier of compulsory military service (1.5 BSB), guardian (welfare) benefit (4 BSB), a tuition supplement for the guardian (welfare) benefit (4 BSB), a one-time benefit for accommodation (75 BSB), 6 BSB benefit for the care of a child belonging to a learning or studying person (from 1 January 2018) and one-time benefit for a single birth of more than one child (4 BSB). From 1 January 2018, a new type of benefit is introduced — child adoption benefit (8 BSB) which is paid for 24 months.

119.According to the Law on Child Benefits, benefits are paid to one of the child-raising persons (guardians). In cases where the parents are divorced, taking into account the interests of the child, benefits are paid to the person with whom the child’s (children’s) residence is established by a court decision. For low income families, other social benefits include the financial social support: social benefit, housing heating expenses, reimbursement of drinking water and hot water costs, pupils’ free meals at school, and a one-time support for pupil school supplies at the beginning of a new academic year (1.5 BSB).

120.Any of the family members (one of the spouses, one of the co-habitants, a child over the age of 18) or a single person has the right to apply for the provision of financial social assistance to the deprived people, i.e. the purpose of social financial benefit is supporting the families of persons who, for objective reasons, do not have sufficient means of subsistence, to ensure that all inhabitants of the country are guaranteed the minimum income for the basic needs on equal terms.

121.On a non-discriminatory basis in terms of gender, support is also provided for the purchase or the rent of a place of residence. According to the Law on support for the acquisition or rental of housing, the main criterion for determining the right of persons, including women and families, to receive support for buying or renting housing, is property and income. Women can use banking services on equal grounds with men, without gender discrimination. Commercial banks, before granting mortgage loans, check the ability of a person (a woman or a man) or a family to return housing loans, namely, they are checked for compliance with the Lending Regulations. Art. 3 of this law establishes the principle of equality, in which support for the acquisition or rental of housing is provided by ensuring equality between individuals and families. General statistics on the allocation of benefits are given in Annex 26.

Article 14

122.At the beginning of 2018, according to Statistics Lithuania, there were 1,884,722 urban inhabitants and 924,179 rural inhabitants of all Lithuanian permanent residents. There were 1,041,365 urban women and 470,243 rural women. In 2017, the unemployment rate among men in rural areas was 12.3 percent, for women — 9.5 percent (in the city, respectively, 6.6 and 4.3 percent). A total of 894.7 thousand urban residents (out of which 470.9 thousand women) and 343.5 thousand rural population (of which 150.4 thousand women) had full-time jobs. More rural women than men were part-time workers.

123.The Lithuanian Rural Development Programme for 2007–2013 provides for the measures such as the support for collaboration and public initiatives of rural population (rural communities), municipality representatives and local entrepreneurs — the means included in the Axis IV LEADER Method of Lithuania’s Rural Development Programme for 2007–2013, the implementation of which is supported by the arrangement of local action groups (hereinafter the LAGs) in rural areas of Lithuania. The objectives of Axis IV LEADER Method of Lithuania’s Rural Development Programme for 2007–2013 are to support the partnership between different sectors, promote sustainable development of the regions, reduce the exclusion of the population (urban-rural, male-female), develop a tolerant, active, and organised rural community, promote the integration of young people in social processes, and also the strengthening of cooperation between rural population of different age groups. The principles of forming the LAGs that will implement the LEADER approach are very important for achieving these goals, i.e. ensuring the representation of the partners from various sectors in the group, gender equality (at least 40 percent of the representatives are of the same gender) and ensuring the participation of young people.

124.In order to promote the employment of rural women in the agricultural and non‑agricultural sectors and to diversify their sources of income, thus improving the quality of life of families living in villages, it should be emphasised that the possibilities for women in Lithuania, and rural women to participate in various economic sectors are not restricted by any laws. Women can set up their own individual or small business without discrimination in the same way as men (business certificates, self-employment certificates of permanent residents of Lithuania or the possibility to set up private legal entities both in the cities and rural areas, do not depend on the gender of the applicant for engagement in different types of non‑agricultural activities).

125.The territory of the LAGs covers 99 percent of the rural territory of Lithuania. During the 2007–2013 funding period, the local development strategies were more focused on infrastructure development and management, although a majority of the local projects were implemented with the aim of increasing social inclusion, especially for marginalised groups including rural women and young people, improvement of living conditions in rural areas, and developing social infrastructure (day-care centres for schoolchildren, and crisis disaster homes for affected families, also including cases of domestic violence, etc.).

126.In 2016, to implement the facility of the Fourth Programme Action Plan “Support for projects of diversification of activities and promotion of small non‑agricultural business activities of women and men in small villages and in rural areas of Lithuania”, support was granted for 17 projects, of which 5 were implemented by women (572,234 EUR) and 12 by men (1,654,731 EUR). The women’s projects included the vacationers and other short-term accommodation activities. The projects provided by men included the following activities: vacationers and other short-term accommodation activities, waste management and disposal, packing and packaging activities, construction activities.

127.In rural and urban areas in Lithuania, women have the same rights to use health care services. There is a developed network of primary health care institutions in Lithuania. There are about 525 medical centres in the rural areas of Lithuania, where community nurses work and periodically — 1–2 times a week — family doctors are called. If necessary, women are referred to consultations or medical treatment at district, regional or national level healthcare facilities.

128.The right to directly use social security is guaranteed to everyone, regardless of gender. According to the Law on State Social Insurance, farmers and their partners are insured for basic and supplementary pensions, and are covered by sickness and maternity social insurance, where only maternity, paternity and childcare benefits and health insurance are provided.

129.According to preliminary data of Statistics Lithuania, in 2017 there were 116 different subordinate social care institutions for the elderly with 5701 living accommodations, and 23 independent living houses for the elderly and disabled persons with 533 living accommodations. Also, home assistance services, social care or integral help to persons at home are provided in all municipalities. Municipalities that receive a request from a person (family member, guardian, and other interested persons) for receiving social services, identify the person’s needs for social services, organise appropriate services according to his or her interests and partially finance the provision of social services.

130.It should be noted that social care services in care facilities for the elderly and disabled women (girls) are organised and provided without gender segregation: a person is placed on the waiting list of access to the care establishments according to the date of submission of documents, and the services of care institutions are provided according to the assessed individual needs of a person (Annex 34).

131.Concerning part 39 of the Recommendations for Lithuania. Strategic guidelines for the deinstitutionalisation of social care homes for disabled children with disabilities, children without parental care, and adults with disabilities were approved in 2012. The Action Plan for transition from institutional care to family and community services for disabled people and children without parental care for the 2014–2020 period was approved in 2014. In 2017, the rearrangement of social welfare institutions was carried out with the aim of building a coherent and coordinated system of assistance and services that would enable every disabled child without parental care or a disabled person to receive personalised services and assistance as needed and to engage in community life. For this purpose, new forms of communal services are being developed — community-based homes, community-based children’s homes, community-based homes for independent living and others are created in flats or residential houses. The nature of community-based services is to provide people with disabilities an atmosphere close to that of a home or family environment, and to promote or develop their autonomy. By the end of 2017, care facilities established 11 community-based residential homes, accommodating 10 children and 62 adults with disabilities. The expanded range of community-based services and infrastructure will not only address the needs of people currently living in institutions (including women with disabilities), but will also ensure that people with disabilities living in the community receive the necessary social services and can reside there as long as possible without institutional care.

132.The MoSSL finances emotional assistance by phone to the country’s residents, provided by 5 emotional help lines of the country: Youth, Children, Hope, Women (the latter two are operating 24 hours a day) and the Linija Doverija.

Article 15

133.On 26 March 2015, the Seimas adopted amendments to the CC and related legislation aimed at implementing Art. 12 of the 2006 United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities on ensuring the rights of persons with disabilities, amending the legal regulation of the institute for limitation of legal capacity. New changes to the legal regulation came into effect on 1 January 2016. The basic principles relate to the fact that the person’s legal capacity must be limited as little as possible, and the measures restricting the person’s legal capacity, when it is necessary to apply them, must be as personalised as possible, adapted to the particular situation of the person and fully justified. If there is any doubt as to the expediency or reasonableness of the limitation of legal capacity, all doubts must be assessed in favour of the person claimed to be incapacitated in a particular area. It seeks to implement both new rules of substantive law and special provisions of procedural law. The CC establishes new legal institutes: 1) decision-making assistance and 2) prior designation.

134.Advance orders, their registration, amendment, addition and cancellation are regulated in Articles 2.1371–2.1373 of the CC. Articles 3.2791–3.2793 of the CC regulate the institute for assistance in decision-making. The assumptions made to individualise the measures of limitation of legal capacity applied to a particular person are established, and provides that the person’s capacity could be limited or the person could be recognised as legally incapable only in certain areas, thus seeking to protect the rights of a person as much as possible and to limit the person’s capacity as little as possible, as well proportionality and validity of this limitation. It should be noted that the person’s legal capacity can be limited only by a court decision.

135.The right of ownership is governed by Chapter V of the Fourth Book of the CC, which does not contain any discriminatory provisions based on gender or age. The law of succession is regulated in the Fifth Book of the CC. The CC does not impose any discriminatory provisions on the basis of gender or age in the field of inheritance law. The specified CC provisions did not change in the 2011–2017 period.

Article 16

136.Concerning part 41 of the Recommendations for Lithuania. The basic principles and relevant provisions related to the equal rights of women and men did not change in the 2011–2017 period. It should be noted that the CC does not regulate the maximum age at which marriage is permitted, and therefore does not impose any discriminatory provisions on the basis of gender or age.

Concerning part 44 of the Recommendations for Lithuania

137.Recommendations for Lithuania were considered in various formats. On 21 August 2014, they were discussed at the meeting of the Commission on Equal Opportunities for Women and Men. On 28 August 2018, to implement the decisions of this meeting, the MoSSL asked the ministries in writing to assess the Recommendations for Lithuania and provide measures for the implementation of these Recommendations by the programmes developed and implemented in accordance with their competence. The Recommendations for Lithuania were distributed in Lithuanian to state institutions of all levels.