It is the year 2020 and I can bet all my coins that the women and the top branches of my family tree and yours would have wagered that by today there would be little or no gender gaps in existence, if only they knew how wrong they had been. I wonder who they wagered against and how they would feel about losing this wager. I wonder because over the past couple of years the fight for gender equality has continued to feel like a losing battle but still we move. To be fair progress has been made, the number of people learning the need to push the cause of gender equality keeps increasing, however there are still gaps between women and their male counterparts across all boards.
The further the gaps are bridged the closer we are to seeing the balance we desire for women in different fields.
“Imagine if you have a team and you don’t let half of the team play. That’s stupid. That makes no sense. And the evidence shows that communities that give their daughters the same opportunities as their sons, they are more peaceful, they are more prosperous, they develop faster, they are more likely to succeed.”- Barack Obama
Gender gap is the difference between women and men as reflected in social, political, intellectual, cultural, or economic attainments or attitudes. The gender gap shows us how unequal access to opportunities maintains inequality between the sexes.
Some of the areas in which the gender gap is prevalent include;
- Pay Gap
- Political Power
- Women in the Global economy
We can go on and on about how issues need to be fixed but these conversations only sound good in theory without practical steps to back them up. Goals can only be achieved when there is a clear and measurable action plan to follow.
Here are some steps you can take to help balance the gender gap.
- Speak to and Listen to women: the voices of women and girls are often excluded in decision making on a national and global level.
- Make education gender sensitive: There has been much progress in increasing access to education, but progress has been slow in improving the gender sensitivity of the education system, including ensuring textbooks promote positive stereotypes.
- Give proper value to ‘women’s work: The unpaid work women and girls do provide the foundation for the global economy. This fact needs to be highlighted more in the media, with the private sector, and in communities.
- Get women into power: A proven way to overcome many systemic barriers to a woman’s success has been increased participation by women in local, regional and national legislation as empowered change agents.
- Encourage women into non-traditional vocations: Supporting women in non-traditional jobs is crucial in not only making long-lasting change in their lives but also help break social taboos.
- Beware the backlash: One of the realities that we need to remember and address is that, when women “trespass” in spaces that were previously completely male-dominated there is often a penalty. In education and in the workplace that backlash often takes the form of sexual harassment, humiliation, violence.
Practical steps to balancing the GENDER PAY GAP.
Living in the 21st century, it should be quite obvious that men and women should be paid equal amounts for doing the same job. Makes sense, right? Unfortunately, this still isn’t the case in many countries. So how can we tackle gender gap? Below are some practical ways you can help bridge the gap and bring equity to the workforce.
In 2016, there was a 20% drop in the percentage of women with full-time jobs, as compared to their male counterparts. Gender pay gap is an age-old issue and while it’s been gradually improving since the 70’s, social scientists firmly believe that equal pay won’t become a norm until the year 2119.
While experts continue to conduct research on the root cause and possible solutions to the inequality, one thing’s for sure: We can’t remain helpless in the workplace.
The gender payment gap is an ever-present issue in the global workforce that affects women throughout their careers. According to a study conducted by the Institute of Women Policy Research in the United States, women are paid 20% less than men on average.
Women of colour gain even less, but the wage inequalities are present in almost all countries around the globe.
Whether you’re an employee or business leader and regardless of your gender, here are eight practical ways to overcome this issue.
- Cultivate Negotiation Skills
- Practice Civic Engagement
- Become a social media activist
- Claim Salary Transparency
- Promote Women Entrepreneurship
- Learn From Successful Women
- Subsidize Childcare Support
- Seek out promotions
Now is the time to be proactive!
Gender payment gap has been around for far too long, but the good news is that we continue to see an increase in the number of companies stepping up and committing to overcome pay inequality.
Overcoming gender payment gap requires receptivity and whole lot of hard work, but the reward for these will be a fair and equal playing field that allows everyone – men and women – to work using their full potential. So let’s do our part and convince industry leaders to do what’s right and join the fight for equality.
Created and Curated by – Oiza Alonge.