International Women’s Day (IWD) occurs annually on March 8. This day is dedicated to celebrating the achievements of women. IWD provides an important moment to showcase commitment to women’s equality, launch new initiatives and action, celebrate women’s achievements, raise awareness, highlight gender parity gains, and more. This year’s focus is on accelerating gender parity.
Did you know? According to the United Nations:
- The gap still remains…. The gender pay gap remains at an average of 20% across the world, and the COVID-19 pandemic has only increased the time it would take to close the gap from 99.5 years to 135.6 years.
- Disproportionate impact. 70% of the 1.3 billion people living in conditions of poverty are women, and in urban areas, 40% of the poorest households are headed by women.
- Compounding crises. 80% of those displaced by climate-related disasters and changes around the world are women and girls.
Despite promoting good narratives on diversity and gender equality, companies are failing to make the necessary changes for women to have the same opportunities as men. Continued gender-based job segregation in several sectors, particularly in technology, is likely to drive increasing gender inequality (including wage inequality) in the future of work.
Factors contributing to the gender pay gap include: job segregation; discrimination, gender stereotypes and social norms that limit women’s access to labour markets and quality jobs; the undervaluation of women’s work, gender-based violence and harassment in the world of work; and uneven distribution of care responsibilities and unpaid work.
This year’s call to action is to step up the adoption and implementation of policies, at all levels, that ensure equal opportunities for employment for all workers, as well as for equal treatment and equal pay.
United Nations: https://www.un.org/en/observances/womens-day
UN Women: https://www.unwomen.org/en/news-stories/announcement/2021/12/international-womens-day-2022-gender-equality-today-for-a-sustainable-tomorrow