The international days serve to reflect, sensitize, raise awareness and put situations of actors at the national, regional and international level under the magnifying glass. In the case of women, It is not about analyzing the problems of a minority but of those who account for a little more than half of the world population, and in Argentina, with a recent National Population Census 2022 that shows that of the 46,044,703 people who inhabit our country he 51.76% are women.
The General Assembly of the United Nations (UN) in 1977 officially designated the March 8 International Women’s Day; 69 years had passed since the tragic day in which 129 workers died in a fire at the Cotton factory, in New York, United States, after they went on strike with permanence in their workplace.
The Declaration of the United Nations on the occasion of the International Day committed the world to fight to convert the premise of equality and empowerment of women into concrete legislation. All the States and societies of the world received this Declaration and sought to convert it into national legislation.
Los Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)also known as the Global Goals, which were adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015, are a universal call to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure peace and prosperity for all. 2030.
The “zeroes” that could change the lives of women
These SDGs have been designed to bring to the world several life-changing “zeroes”, which includes zero poverty, zero hunger, zero AIDS and zero discrimination against women and girls. In addition to the complaint against violence and sexual exploitation, the unequal division of unpaid work -both domestic and in the care of other people- is added discrimination in decision-making in the public and private spheres as major obstacles that still persist. .
“Gender equality is not only a fundamental human right, but it is one of the essential foundations for building a peaceful, prosperous and sustainable world.” This is how the United Nations describes it in the fifth Sustainable Development Goal whose purpose is “achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls”.
According to World Bank reports in 2022, around 2.4 billion women of working age do not have equality of economic opportunities and it has contributed to the fact that 178 countries have legal barriers in this regard.
Science, motherhood and broken glass
The indices produced show that 95 countries do not guarantee equal remuneration for women with respect to men for work of equal value. Worldwide, women still have access to only three quarters of the rights recognized for men, which translates into a total score of 76.5 out of 100 points, which reveals the lack of complete legal parity.
Only 12 countries, all members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), have legal parity between genders. Worldwide, the largest number of reforms corresponded to the indicators of parenthood, remuneration and work.
Many modifications focused on protection against sexual harassment at work, the prohibition of discrimination based on gender, the extension of paid leave for new fathers and mothers, and the elimination of labor restrictions for women.
Women, 8M and human development
In Latin America and the Caribbean, women have access to less than three quarters of the legal rights granted to men. Of the 32 economies in the region, two enacted reforms in the past year. Argentina explicitly accounted for periods of absence for child care. Colombia became the first country in Latin America to introduce paid parental leave, with the aim of reducing discrimination against women in the workplace. Only half of the economies in the region guarantee some type of paid leave for parents.
And if we talk about equity, a special section on International Women’s Day deserves the so-called “digital divide”. Men and women do not have the same opportunities when it comes to developing digital skills necessary to function fully in our information society.
Technology plays a preponderant role in an uncertain, complex world that has moved back substantially in many respects since the COVID-19 pandemic. Above all, in Latin America, one of the most affected regions and with the strongest economic contraction – close to 7% – in 2020 and with a slow and uneven recovery in the 2021-2022 period.
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The latest UNDP report on the Human Development Index (HDI) warns about the need to apply policies aimed at promoting investments in various dimensions, but mainly in renewable energies and social protection to prepare societies for the contingencies of an uncertain world. At the same time, innovation in its many forms —technological, economic, cultural— can also develop capacities to respond to future challenges.
Just like the title of the HDI 2022 report: Uncertain times, unstable lives. Shaping our future in a world in transformation. A world in which greater equality and a leading role for women can forge stronger, just, equitable and resilient societies.
* Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences (Universidad del Salvador). Degree in Sociology (USAL). Specialist in Scientific Research Methodology (UNLA) and PhD in Political Science (USAL)
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