Many of the gender inequalities that exist today have been revealed throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Typically, during recessions, men are more affected by unemployment. However, during this pandemic, women have faced a dramatic increase in joblessness in comparison to men. This is mainly due to the fact that many jobs commonly held by women require close contact, and therefore do not adhere to social distancing protocols. Furthermore, with schools and daycare establishments needing to close, many working mothers made the choice to stay home to care for their children.
Aside from job inequalities between men and women, women are also less likely to have access to adequate medical care, especially during a pandemic. Oftentimes, women’s reproductive and maternal health resources are compromised. For instance, in Latin America and the Caribbean, 18 million women will lose access to contraceptives during the Coronavirus pandemic. Similar to this, women in Pakistan are being disproportionately affected not only in the workplace and at home, but also with the healthcare provided to them.
Domestic duties are another way in which women are being disproportionately affected by this pandemic. The education system in Pakistan already has low learning levels and high dropout rates, however, it is likely to be even more severely impacted because of the pandemic. One article highlights the fact that girls will be more negatively impacted by this because of household duties. Find more details about the story of a “bright 15 year old girl who always got good grades” from Malawi below. Malawi is known to have one of the highest rates of child marriage in the world – more than 40% of girls wed before they are 18 and when they get married, they often drop out of school. The girls’ mentor shares that since the pandemic, one student was planning on getting married because of the stressful circumstances at home and the hope that marriage would provide support for her and her family.
“How the COVID19 Crisis is Exacerbating Gender Inequality”
“Girls, Has the Pandemic Made You Think of Quitting School? Call Your Mentor.”
“The Impact of COVID-19 on Gender Inequality”