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Action needed on Gender Equality - Archibald

12 October, 2017 - by Caoimhe Archibald

Sinn Féin MLA Caoimhe Archibald said greater action is needed to tackle gender inequality following the publication of the EU's latest Gender Equality League tables. 

The East Derry MLA said:

"Over the past ten years there has been no tangible progress in tackling gender inequality across all spheres of life.

"There have been no significant advances in reducing the levels of inequality across fields such as the workplace, income, education, health or political engagement.

"In third level education the traditional stereotypical gaps remain, males dominating in science and technology (66%) and females dominating in education (78%), health and welfare (71%) and humanities and the arts (65%).

"The concern is that where segregation remains in education, this is reflected in divisions in the labour market. The report states that this reinforces the undervaluation of work, skills and competencies traditionally attributed to women.

"The gender gap in employment remains with women more likely to face economic inactivity, part-time work, unpaid work, and lower wages; they have an average of five years’ shorter working life than men and face a significant risk of poverty in old age

"The report shows some advances have been made in the corporate field with more women being represented on boards but this is still very low at an average of 22% (up from 10% in 2005) so much more action is required.

"It is unacceptable that such inequalities persist and that so little progress has been made. Tackling gender inequality must be a priority, it requires political leadership to address the barriers that exist."

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