Gender Equality is a Human Right
In the search for a sustainable future, gender equality is one of the fundamental ways through which to promote quality of life and ensure equal opportunity for people all over the world. Gender equality particularly relates to the assurance of equal opportunities, rights, and protection of women and girls. This is reflected in one of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations (UN): #SDG5, or rather, Gender Equality.
The UN's SDG's are a series of goals that are designed to help build a more sustainable future for us all. It is with the goal of ensuring that no one is left behind, through improving quality of life. These SDG's are intended to be fulfilled by the year 2030.
Significant progress has been made regarding education, jobs, FGM, and decrease in early marriage. Yet, many challenges remain, including laws and social norms that curtail women’s lives.
Yet, when it comes to job positions, women are still significantly underrepresented in political leadership roles but are overrepresented as frontline workers. According to the UN, women comprise only 23% in national parliaments but comprise 70% of health and social workers. Unpaid domestic and care work is also largely carried out by women (3 times more than men!) and has since increased due to COVID-19.
Moreover, 1 in 5 girls and women experience sexual and domestic violence and has increased during COVID-19. In fact, the UN states that approximately 49 countries lack laws that protect women from domestic violence.
Equality is a human right, and promotes the protection of both boys and girls, men, and women. As women and girls represent approximately half the world’s population, it is vital to uplift their standing, otherwise inequality stagnates progress.
#SDG5 is reflected in the Enactus Macquarie enterprise, the Women’s Creative Hub, whose mission is to provide refugee women with a source of income, to empower and uplift them within the community, These women create products from recycled materials that are then sold at markets. Through this, WCH seeks to raise awareness of the issues surrounding refugees and asylum seekers.
“Women belong in all places where decisions are being made. It shouldn’t be that women are the exception.” - Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the US