On average, women have worse jobs than men, and with fewer opportunities for promotion. They also earn less, even for the same work. Moreover, women often bear a double burden: Worldwide, they perform an average of three quarters of the domestic work that is unpaid. In several cultures, access to the labour market is made impossible or difficult for them, which is one of the reasons women are overrepresented in the informal sector. In South Asia, 80 percent of women in non-farm jobs have an informal working relationship, and in sub-Saharan Africa it is 74 percent. This means that women have fewer rights and security, and that their safety and health are more at risk. Violence, intimidation, and discrimination affect women more than men, and this applies even more to LGBTI people and migrants.
The corona crisis has also taken a greater toll on women than on men, as they are overrepresented in the hardest hit sectors, such as the garment industry and floriculture. Household and care workers also had a hard time, as they ran a higher risk of illness, violence, and loss of work and income. Since women were more likely than men to care for sick relatives, their double burden became even greater.
Fortunately, several positive developments can help to counter this. The #MeToo movement has put sexual harassment in the spotlight. With the ILO Convention on Violence and Harassment in the World of Work (C190), an important weapon has been added. Sustainable Development Goal 5, gender equality, also strongly supports women. The trade union movement is playing an active role in this, but still has a great deal of work to do, including internally. While the number of female union members worldwide has risen to 42.4 percent, women are still underrepresented, with only 28 percent in positions of leadership in the trade union movement. In addition, many more men than women participate in collective bargaining and in social dialogues.
We want to see gender equality and safety at work as well as a workplace free of violence and harassment.
We follow four tracks:
South Asia, Indonesia, the MENA region (the Middle East and North Africa), and Ethiopia.