It has been near 90 years since women in Britain have had the opportunity to vote. That means some of our great grandmothers were not able to vote for who they wanted in parliament. This was a monumental moment which was a symbol of hope for women all across the world of equality and non-discrimination. How far have we come since then? Globally? Not very far at all.
Inequality is the product of our in-perfect capitalist society but that does not mean we have to be happy with it. Women are one of the most marginalised groups in the global economy. This untapped resource which is 45% of the world population is the most important issue facing the global political economy as many of their efforts to be engaged in the economy are full of glass ceilings and prejudice.
Globalisation has seen the spread of western ideals to many different parts of the world as females seek to liberate themselves from oppressions they face in society. The UK government arranged the Girl summit last year in order to tackle the issues of Female Genital Mutilation and Child early enforced marriage on a global scale. These issues have oppressed and hindered women from reaching their full potential as economic advocates. They have been used to control women to abide by society standards and have cost many countries the labour and economic wealth which women provide.
FGM and EFM cause many women to have problems in childbirth and can cause many disease or illness. The lack of health systems for women in regard to pregnancy costs the global economy $15 billion in productivity due to maternal and newborn death.This is because many women are not able to work during unwanted pregnancies because of the lack of family planning as an option.
Furthermore, many of the activities which women are responsible for aren’t accounted for. These include fetching water looking after children house upkeep and cooking. Without these essential parts of society, many of them would collapse. Women contribute to economic growth: their unpaid work at home and on the farm equals about 1/3 of world GDP(Women Deliver 2010). An article by the African Development Bank Group state that ‘ 40 to 60% of those employed in the agricultural sector in Africa are women and yet less than 15% are landowners’.
This is not only just a developing world problem. Women in developed nations are facing different challenges and are still being discriminated in terms of pay, job security and access to promotion in the workforce. They are also under increased pressured to not have children in order to save their career prospects. Davidson states that ‘the gender gap has closed by 4pc’(Davidson 2014). As the issue of equality rages on the global political economy losses the full contribution of 55% of the population.
As men we are given freedom even in sayings such as the boys will be boys. Let us give the opportunity for the girls to be girls.
Women Deliver. 2010. Womendeliver.org. [ONLINE] Available at http://www.womendeliver.org/assets/PocketCard.pdf. [Accessed 14 December 15].
Davidson, L. (2014), “Gender equality will happen – but not until 2095,” The Telegraph. Available at http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/economics/11191348/Gender-equality-will-happen-but-not-until-2095.html
African Development Bank Group. 2014. http://www.afdb.org. [ONLINE] Available at http://www.afdb.org/en/news-and-events/article/gender-dividend-the-economic-benefits-of-investing-in-women-13188/. [Accessed 14 December 15]