We’ve come a long way from the days of the Cave Man dragging his woman by her hair to have his way with her; but we’re by no means equal.

  • Women are likely to earn £300,000 less than men over their working life, read more
  • Regardless of income or employment status, women spend two days more per month on average doing house chores than men, read more
  • Women are still frowned on for having body hair, read more

And that’s not even the worst of it, still in places of our world women are refused a voice, refused an education, seen as being below men and offered little to no respect.

That is why International Women’s Day is an important awareness raising date in the diary. Until there is true equality across the globe, we will always call for this day to be celebrated.

“The World Economic Forum believes it will take another 118 years – or until 2133 – until the global pay gap between men and women is finally closed.” BBC News

Although many women now undertake leadership, high profile and highly skilled roles, this often comes at a cost. The choice between a career or a family. Not for all, and of course, many find ways to work around it; but these kind of roles tend to involve long hours, lots of stress and being away from home for long periods of time. Which usually means men are seen as being more suited to these roles as women are seen to be needed more at home to keep the house going.

“Companies that offer perks to help with work-life balance, such as generous vacation policies or the ability to telecommute, have a recruiting edge.” Paul McDonald, senior executive director at Robert Half.

But who really wants that kind of stressful life in 2016? It has never been easier to work away from the office giving both women and men the opportunity to be at home more, spending time with their family or pursuing personal hobbies. Personally I think there should be more part-time opportunities too within the leadership, high profile and highly skilled professions. There are more than enough qualified, experienced and skilled people around that need a job and can share the role responsibilities perfectly well.

International Women’s Day reminds us of where women have come from in our struggle for equality and how far we still have to go. What will your pledge for parity be?

I’ll leave you with some inspiring words from Sam Smethers, Chief Executive, The Fawcett Society, the largest UK charity with a focus on advancing women’s rights and equality in Britain.

“Its a day of celebration and solidarity, a day to recognise our shared struggle for rights and equality. 150 years ago when The Fawcett Society was founded, a woman and all she owned belonged to her father or her husband. We have fought and won reproductive, voting, education, working and maternity rights. But in the UK we still have a pay gap of 14%, 54,000 women a year experience pregnancy discrimination and 2 women each week are murdered by a partner or ex-partner.  Our work is far from done.”


9 thoughts on “Why do we need International Women’s Day?

  1. Not just a day, but women ought to be respected throughout the year. In a world like ours, women’s day hardly serves its purpose because they are subjugated every single day. The real women’s day would be when it all ends and they are treated equally.

  2. Respect starts on the personal level, when a woman is treated with respect and viewed as a partner with her husband/signifigant other and not a lesser it up lifts society as a whole.

    • It helps greatly, but respect at home for those around you is different to respecting a whole gender. The next generation learning from their parents that women and men are equal through actions and not just words, is when real equality can begin. x

      • At home is the whole gender to a point in life that is until of course when one is out into the world. Sadly I think the next generation continues the alarming trend of thinking and settling for less than on so many levels that it will continue the thought of women being less than.

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  4. And for all this the Government (in the UK) are still only paying lip service to all this women’s rights and equality stuff. Women still do not have the same rights as men, despite so called government legislation, and in many, many jobs are still treated unequally. I used to have a fairly high powered job and many a time I have gone to a meeting with a male colleague and been thought of as the secretary, until I pointed out actually my male colleague way the secretary. Yes I did laugh…later on the way home, but during the meeting I let them know I was not amused.

    • Good on you Eliza, having the courage to stick up for yourself in such an awkward moment is not as easy as it sounds and can be a humiliating experience for many – and you can bet your male colleagues never gave that mix up another thought! We have to carry the burden of pointing out to men when they’re not treating us equally, but sometimes that itself is so hard to pin down when the word ‘banter’ is thrown around and you’re then accused of not being able to take a joke. It’s slow progress but one day…one day! x

      • Oh believe me I’m not a shrinking violet, many a man has heard the sharp end of my tongue. After a while it was well known in the companies we dealt with I was not a female to mess with. I dealt with men as if I was a man. The trick is to think like a man. I know I shouldn’t have to but if you want to succeed you have to fight fire with fire. If I’d been ladylike and shown any signs of weakness I’d have been chewed up and spat out. Equality is still a battle we must fight for. And if being strong and tough is one of those weapons use it. I used to think those of my female colleagues that used sex or sexy clothes as a weapon were cheapening our cause. I didn’t have awkward moments the men did. I may be little but by god they knew it when they had annoyed me. And I was good at my job which was in a male dominated workplace.

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