It’s an obligation!
Gender equality is one of the EU policy fields with the longest history. While this does not mean that all policy areas today have a clear gender perspective, the issue of equality between women and men has been on the agenda since the late 1950s.
The EU has clearly recognized the benefits of gender mainstreaming, and all EU-funded policies, actions and programmes accordingly must include a gender perspective. In addition, due to the crucial importance of GE in the fields covered by the ESF, further provisions are introduced by the ESF regulations. Gender mainstreaming is not therefore an option, but an obligation.