Gender equality is definitely a human right, but there’s a persistent gap in access to opportunities and decision-making power for women and men in the world. Since this is a worldwide thing then we should start from the beginning, what exactly is that? Is it food, is it a book or perhaps a movie? Well gender discrimination, also known as gender inequality, is the prejudice or discrimination based on an individual’s gender; it can be linked or related to stereotype and includes the belief that one gender is superior to the other. In other words, gender discrimination is like the preconceived opinions or preconceptions about the gender of someone, usually not based on reason, facts or actual experiences.
Examples of gender discrimination include offering women and men different rates of salary for the same job and even the having the thought of “girls can cry, but boys can’t” is considered gender discrimination. Another example includes thinking that university education is more important for men or that they deserve jobs more. This is a greater issue than it seems and many females around the world aren’t allowed to study further after high school because their family thinks that females should settle in and stay at home doing chores. This is a representation of how big opportunities are snatched from females.
Globally, women have fewer opportunities for economic participation than men, less access to basic and higher education, greater health and safety risks, and less political representation. Son preference is believing that boys have more value than girls so they prefer sons and this can be shown in the gender sex ratio of some countries. There’s even son preference in many parts of south, east and central Asia. However, son preference has reportedly declined a lot in Korea.
Globally, no country has attained a complete gender equality but Scandinavian countries like Iceland, Norway, Finland, and Sweden lead the world in their progress toward closing the gender gap. In these countries, there is relatively equitable distribution of available income, resources, and opportunities for men and women. The greatest gender gaps are identified primarily in the Middle East, Africa, and South Asia.
To be precise, only 6 countries give women equal legal work rights as men; Belgium, Denmark, France, Latvia, Luxembourg and Sweden. That’s an increase (from zero) compared to the last decade. But this rate of progress isn’t as great as it sounds, because it means that women won’t be able to achieve full equality in the legal and economic areas until 2073.
Of all those countries, France has the biggest improvement over the past decade for implementing a domestic violence law, setting penalties for workplace sexual harassment and adding a paid maternal leave. But countries in the Middle east and Africa has an average of 47.37, which means that women receive less than half the rights of men.
At all heights, women are broadly belittled and underestimated as decision-makers or leaders. In legislatures, for instance, women around the world are outnumbered, yet women’s political participation is crucial for achieving genuine democracy. It is said that women could boost a better democracy but outdated laws and prejudice are holding them back. Only 24% of parliamentary positions around the world are held by women and there are only 10 female heads of government out of possibly 193; which is only 5.1% of the total percentage.
Reports of gender inequalities throughout history have largely established that gender discrimination arose 8000 years ago, though it may vary from nation to nation. Its beginnings in America started in the 1900s. Gender gap reports have stated that humanity is approximately 108 years away from gender equality, in every factor of life like society, culture, economy, education, among others, given to the fact that at the moment almost 90% of individuals globally including both men and women are biased against women.
A final area of focus in attaining gender equality is women’s economic and political empowerment. Though women comprise more than 50% of the world’s population, they only owned 28% of the world’s wealth in 2010. But reports state that by the end of 2020, women are expected to control $72 trillion, which is equivalent to 32% of all wealth around the world! As more and younger women earn more wealth, they are more often asserting themselves as decision makers over the full range of finance-related issues. Although there are still far more net-worth of men than women, the proportion of the wealthiest women to men (those with US$5 million or more in assets) is roughly the same—27% men and 22% women.
We’ve talked about gender discrimination worldwide but now we’re limiting it a little and talk about the presence of gender discrimination or inequality in Latin America.