International Women’s Day 2017: Raising Women’s Labour Market Participation
Today is International Women’s Day, and this year it is intended to remind us that even today the goal of gender equality remains unfulfilled in many fields. International Women’s Day 2017 focuses on the situation of women in the changing labour market. In celebration of this year’s theme #BeBoldForChange, we encourage people to help create a more inclusive working environment.
For universal women’s empowerment, it is vital to ensure that women participate in the labour market under the same conditions as men, because true gender equality is impossible without women’s economic empowerment.
Less than a half of women of working age are in the labour force, as opposed to three quarters of men, according to data from the International Labour Organization. In addition, lower-paid jobs are a sad reality for many women, and they also do a much greater share of unpaid work at home and care for family members. This has a negative effect on the global economy, because the equal labour market participation of women would generate a 26-percent increase in GDP by 2050.
Globally, Slovenia is a leader when it comes to closing the gender pay gap, and also achieves good results in women’s political participation. However, there are still very few women in Slovenia in the corporate leadership of major companies and in non-traditional occupations.
With a view to eliminating all forms of discrimination against women, Slovenia takes action in international organisations and cooperates with other countries. Slovenia pursues this goal in various friendship groups (Gender Equality Network; Women, Peace and Security National Focal Points Network; Men Engage, etc.), as well as through its development cooperation. In 2017, Slovenia allocated EUR 320,000 for development projects in support of women’s empowerment (in Rwanda, Uganda, Jordan, Lebanon, and Western Balkan countries). The 61st session of the Commission on the Status of Women begins on 13 March 2017, and the Slovenian delegation there will be calling for greater progress in achieving gender equality.
International Women’s Day originated with the movement for women’s rights at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, and in 2017 it reminds us that the goals of ensuring gender equality have not been achieved and calls for further efforts to put gender equality into practice.