International Women’s Day is commemorated every year on 8th March and celebrates the contributions women have made to society. It is a time to reflect on and celebrate the progress made, as well as a time to call for change amidst the inequalities which continue to exist between women and men, concerning access to the labour market, unemployment and conditions at work. Women and girls continue to be undervalued; they work more and earn less and have fewer choices; and experience multiple forms of violence at home and in public spaces.
In light of this, to raise awareness and to stimulate conversations about improving the status of women, a report was published by the ILO in 2019 entitled, “A Quantum leap for gender equality: For a better future of work for all.”
Some of the key findings in this Report included:
- 45.3% of women are employed compared to 71.4% of men.
- Women were more likely to be employed in occupations that are considered to be low-skilled and to face worse working conditions than men.
- 21.7% of women perform unpaid care work on a full-time basis compared to 1.5% of men.
- Mothers of young children have the lowest chance of being a manager while fathers of young children the highest: 25.1% of people in managerial positions with young children (aged 0-5 years) are women and 74.9% are men.
- 44.3% of women managers have an advanced university degree compared with 38.3% of men managers.
- 41.5% of women with a university degree are either unemployed or outside the labour force, while only 17.2% of men are in a similar situation.
- The gender wage gap remained at an average of 20% globally.