This International Women's Day, let's take a chance to reflect on the reality of women's lives across the world!
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development adopted by world leaders includes achieving gender equality and women's empowerment.
Sustainable development means gender equality (Goal Number 5).
Fulfilling this right is the best chance we have in meeting some of the most pressing challenges of our time-from economic crisis and lack of health care, to climate change, violence against women and escalating conflicts.
However insufficient progress on structural issues at the root of gender inequality such as legal discrimination, unfair social norms and attitudes, decision making on sexual and reproductive issues and low level of political participation are undermining the ability to achieve SDG 5 (UN Women).
The Global Gender Gap Report 2020 indicates that none of us will see gender parity in our lifetimes and nor will many of our children and that gender parity will not be attained for 99.5 years!
Dwell on the fact that even in 2020 there are 72 countries where women are barred from opening bank accounts or obtaining credit.
Look at the Gender Social Norms Index 2020 released by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) which measures how social beliefs obstruct gender equality. The finding was that close to 90 percent of men and women hold some sort of bias against women.
We have reached parity in primary school enrollment and reduced maternal mortality, but 28% of people still feel it is justified for a man to beat his wife!
This is an important year- 2020 marks the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action (Beijing+25) for womens rights.
On behalf of the IAWMH, let's take a pledge that this International Womens Day, we will recognise the role that gender equity and social norms have on women's mental health. We will strive through research, advocacy, knowledge sharing and policies towards ensuring that every woman and girl child in the world realises their potential and that we make efforts to remove barriers towards women attaining mental health and well being!
Passionate about gender equity in Mental Health:
Join us at the 9th World Congress on Women's Mental Health in Melbourne Australia in March 2021.