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#BeBoldForChange – the Gender Gap & Mental Health

Posted on: Monday, March 6th, 2017

This Wednesday, March 8th, is International Women’s Day… a day created to celebrate the social, economic, cultural, and political achievement of women from around the world. It is about encouraging and enacting gender equality in the long run by creating a discussion around it. This year’s theme is focused on the gender gap in the workforce and the campaign seeks to ask people how they will #BeBoldForChange in order to diversify the working world. According to the World Economic Forum, the gender gap will not be closed for another 170 years, unless people actively work to create more change. 

 

About the Gender Gap

It has many causes, some of which are:

  • Minority women have far less access to post-secondary education… over half of low-income families are minorities, and only 52% of low-income families can send their children to school.
  • Women face much more pressure than men to take on a caregiving role within the family, and as such, face some workplace discrimination. It has been found that mothers are perceived as less competent than men with the same qualifications when on the job hunt.
  • Women are discriminated against when trying to enter “male-centric” areas of work, and often these ideas are promoted in early education.

 

It Goes Beyond Just the Workforce

  • Self Image – the amount of women who are unhappy with themselves has drastically increased since 1970, whereas men have remained the same. 
  • Sexuality & Relationships – around the world, women are subjected to more genital mutilation, child marriages, sexual abuse, and other acts like dowry deaths and honor killings. 
  • Sports – the number or female coaches in Canadian sports is far below that of males, and televised sports devote less than 3% of their media coverage to women’s sports.

 

It Causes Anxiety and Depression

  • women who receive lower pay than men for the same work are 2.5 times more likely to be depressed, and 4 times more likely to have anxiety when compared to their male counterparts. 

 

How You Can Help!

In order to do your part, you have to take personal responsibility for creating the change yourself through standing up against gender bias, stereotyping, and inequality whenever and wherever you see it! In doing so, you will be contributing to positive and confident work environments, greater economic profitability, and social justice. 

Take the pledge to #BeBoldForChange!

 

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