Female Border and Customs Officers play an integral role within the Moldovan and Ukrainian border agencies, serving across the full range of functions. Despite this, women constitute only 27% of all personnel across Moldova’s Border Police and Customs Service and Ukraine’s State Border Guard Service and State Fiscal Service. Although precise figures are not available, women occupy between 10-15% of the management positions in all four services, whilst 26% of all personnel deployed to Border Crossing Points are female.
In February 2017, EUBAM ran a photo competition with the Moldovan and Ukrainian border agencies to demonstrate the breadth of responsibilities carried out by women in border management and customs administrations on a daily basis: at the border, at inland clearance posts, in enforcement roles, and in highly-skilled, technical support functions.
Gender awareness amongst EUBAM’s partner services is at different levels. An understanding of the general importance of gender issues and a robust legal basis for gender equality are clearly identifiable in both countries. Positive trends, including the provision that 50% of Border Police and Customs Officers at Chisinau International Airport must be female, illustrate that the benefits of gender equality are gradually being recognised.
However, further steps are possible, such as improving the understanding as to how more female staff can improve operational capacities, as well as how they can make border and customs agencies more representative of the societies they serve, thus raising public trust in the institutions. In this video, Natalia Gumeniuk of Odesa Maritime Border Guard Detachment explains her role and motivation for working in the State Border Guard Service.
EUBAM is present at the Moldova-Ukraine border every day to advise the border agencies on controls and procedures. The Mission’s border and customs experts are relied upon by their Moldovan and Ukrainian counterparts to give reliable advice on EU regulations and standards. EUBAM also believes it is important they are seen as role models in their conduct and attitude.
The Mission’s efforts on mainstreaming gender considerations into the work of our Moldovan and Ukrainian partners rest in large part on our experts at the border promoting gender awareness in their actions and behaviour on a daily basis. All EUBAM staff must complete the UN Women’s “I Know Gender” course, and managers are also encouraged to take UN Women’s “Security Sector Reform: Rights and Needs of Women in Border Management” course.
Who we are?
The European Union Border Assistance Mission to Moldova and Ukraine (EUBAM) was launched in 2005. It promotes border control and customs norms and practices that meet EU standards and serve the needs of its two partner countries. It is an advisory, technical body with the Headhunters in Odesa (Ukraine). A Memorandum of Understanding signed by the European Commission and the Governments of Moldova and Ukraine in late 2005 is the legal basis for EUBAM, while an Advisory Board acts as the Mission’s governing body. The mandate of the Mission has already been extended five times (in 2007, 2009, 2011, 2015 and 2017), with the current mandate expiring on 30 November 2020.
What we do?
The Mission works with Moldova and Ukraine to harmonise border control, and customs and trade standards and procedures with those in EU Member States. It helps to improve cross-border cooperation between the border guard and customs agencies and other law enforcement bodies and to facilitate international coordinated cooperation. EUBAM assists Moldova and Ukraine to fulfil the obligations of the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA), which both countries signed as part of their Association Agreements with the EU. It also contributes to the peaceful settlement of the Transnistrian conflict through confidence building measures and as a monitoring presence at the Transnistrian segment of the Moldova-Ukraine border.
Where we work?
The Moldova-Ukraine state border is 1,222 km long, consisting of 955 km of “green” (land) border and 267 km of “blue” (river) border.
The Mission is headquartered in Odesa (Ukraine). It has an EUBAM Office in Moldova and six field offices – three on the Moldovan side of the joint border and three on the Ukrainian side.
EUBAM Office in Moldova has a liaison function which is focused on projecting and representing the activities of EUBAM amongst other donors and beneficiaries to ensure better coordination and an improved consultative process. It enables the identification of strategic partner needs that are relevant to current and future planning, and have provides EUBAM with an understanding of the broader issues and obstacles that may affect the achievement of objectives.
There are 67 permanent official border crossing points along the Moldovan-Ukrainian border, including international, inter-state and local ones. The central segment of this border length 453 km is under Tiraspol control, including 25 official crossing points to Ukraine.
The “internal boundary” between the two banks of the Dniester river is not monitored by Moldovan border guards, but there are some customs check-points.