Statement at a Third Committee Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers

Ambassador Paul Folmsbee
Senior Area Advisor for Western Hemisphere Affairs
New York, New York
October 13, 2021


Special Rapporteur García-Sayán, the United States welcomes your new report addressing the participation of women in the administration of justice.

We highlight the report’s understanding that a commitment to gender equality strengthens the legitimacy of the judicial branch of government. Diversity within the judiciary, including members of vulnerable groups, such as LGBTQI+ persons, members of racial and ethnic minority groups, and persons with disabilities, ensures more equitable application of the rule of law. Increasing the inclusion of women – in all their diversity – in the judiciary also equips societies to more effectively combat gender-based violence.

The United States urges governments around the world to reduce limitations placed on women’s involvement in the judiciary, including by preventing the compartmentalization of women judges into certain subject matter areas. We also welcome the Special Rapporteur’s focus on the relationship between caregiving responsibilities and career advancement for female judges, and look forward to further reporting on how best to address this challenge.

Question: Special Rapporteur García-Sayán, what role should mentors and mentorship programs have in efforts to increase the proportion of female judges, especially at the higher levels of the judiciary?