In a July 2011 referendum, Moroccans voted in favor of a constitution that included reforms establishing women’s equality under the law and the supremacy of those international laws to which Morocco is signatory over local laws. The roundtable allowed participants to discuss and advocate for the alignment of Morocco’s laws with the constitutional gender-parity provisions. In preparation, Jossour analyzed Morocco’s legal practice to identify de jure and de facto laws—including those in the areas of family law, criminal law, labor law, as well as those related to nationality and inheritance—that contradict the constitution’s gender-parity provisions. The organization is holding roundtable events throughout the country to solicit citizen feedback, build non-governmental organization support and advocate for the harmonization of Moroccan laws with the constitution.
Representatives from two political parties, L’Union Socialiste des Forces Populaires and Rassemblement National des Independants, and two civil society organizations, Jossour and l’Organisation Marocaine des Droits Humains, spoke during the July roundtable. Jossour representatives discussed a draft law that the organization has proposed to implement the constitution’s stipulation for the creation of a governmental gender-parity authority. Participants also shared recommendations on how Moroccan laws and practice—such as polygamy, the marriage of minors, legal guardianship of children, inheritance and penalty for violence against women—should be changed to be consistent with the constitutional gender-parity mandate and enforceable international law.
ABA ROLI, with funding from the U.S. Department of State’s Middle East Partnership Initiative, continues to support Jossour in building its capacity, including in the areas of advocacy and legislative drafting and analysis.
To learn more about our work in Morocco, please contact the ABA Rule of Law Initiative at firstname.lastname@example.org.