Gender Equality and Women' s Development

[White Paper] Equality, Development and Sharing: Progress of Women's Cause in 70 Years Since New China's Founding

Updated: Sep 21, 2019 Print
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VIII. Women Play Unique Role in Cultivation of Family Virtues

Families are the cells of society. Family harmony is good for social stability, family happiness creates social harmony, and family virtues bring about social civilization. China has always attached great importance to family building, focused on protecting women's rights to marriage and family, and increasingly consolidated the equality between men and women in marriage and family relations. Since the 18th CPC National Congress, it has paid more attention to family, family education, family tradition, and the unique role of women in family life, promoting the core socialist values to take root in families, and forming a new style of socialist family virtues featuring patriotism, family love, mutual love and care, aspiration for the pursuit of excellence and moral integrity, and joint building and sharing.

Establishing a marriage and family system to improve the equality between men and women. The enactment of the New Marriage Law in 1950 fundamentally abolished the discrimination and oppression against women in the feudal marriage system, and as a result women's marriage and family life have undergone historical changes. The first 1954 Constitution of the People's Republic of China clearly prescribed that women and men have equal rights in family life, and that marriage, family, mothers and children are protected by the State. All previous constitutional amendments have focused on protecting women's equal rights to marriage and family. The amendment of the Marriage Law reaffirmed the implementation of a marriage system featuring the equality between men and women, advocated maintaining equal, harmonious and civilized marriage and family relations, and added provisions prohibiting domestic violence and supporting compensation for housework and divorce damages. Relevant laws and regulations concerning marriage and family relations emphasize the protection of women's rights. In 2015, the Anti-Domestic Violence Law was enacted, which prohibits any form of domestic violence and protects women's personal rights in family. In 2017, the General Principles of the Civil Law was promulgated and the compilation of the Civil Code was initiated, focusing on further improving the marriage and family system featuring the equality between men and women. In 2017, six government entities, including the All-China Women's Federation, the Central Public Security Comprehensive Management Commission, and the Supreme People's Court, issued the "Opinions on Preventing and Resolving Marriage and Family Disputes" to provide diverse and convenient services for the public to resolve marriage and family disputes. In 2018, the Supreme People's Court issued a judicial interpretation to solve the thorny problem concerning the identification standard of the joint debts of husband and wife.

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