Last year was a year of milestones for women and gender equity - the narrative surrounding gender equality, a conversation seemingly as old as time itself, has taken centre stage in the global consciousness.
While the world has opened up to more issues surrounding women and bringing in new eyes and a new generation of leaders and advocates to the fore, actual steps have yet to be taken. Women in Bangladesh are facing hardships, trying to establish their rights in families and society alike. Particularly in the workplace and of law, women face discrimination against their gender, wilful exclusion, biased injustice and have little to no influence in the decision making processes.
Still can't grasp the image? Here are a few pointers.
If you're applying for a job and there's only one woman in your applicant batch, there's statistically no chance she'll get the job over the rest
Men are promoted at 30% higher rates than women during their early career stages
90% of women leave the workforce because of workplace problems (other than having a child)
In a study of 21,980 firms from 91 countries, just over 50% of firms didn't have any female executives (only 11% of firms had all-female executives)
50% of women in STEM fields will eventually leave because of hostile work environments
In addition to women attaining a minimum of bachelor degrees, they are also the majority of university students in nearly 100 countries. Women are an educated bunch, particularly in developed countries - but they are not climbing the ranks. Why not? Because gender bias is real and it's a creaky ladder.
Why do we need equity?
To integrate more women into the workforce, reducing gender-based discrimination and establishing gender equity is essential. We should note that there is an important distinction between gender equality and gender equity. They are related terms but have different meanings. When it comes to the workplace and job-related scenarios, equity sets the stage for equality, as it refers to the fair of treatment for both women and men, according to their respective needs.
If equality is the end goal, equity is the means to get there.