Hi friends! As previously stated, March is Women’s History Month, and I’m excited to share our first guest post. Shout out to Cassandra Carr who also provided one of the few Black History Month posts this year too. <3 She makes some excellent points here, with numerous sources and resources, so I hope you’ll check it out!
8 reasons men and women are still not equal in 2018
By Cassandra Carr
It’s 2018. Women are leading the charge all over the world to increase equality, but we’re far from where we should be. We make up a large portion of the American movement called The Resistance, and more women than ever – by a large margin – are running for office. Some inequalities are narrowing, but still present. These are positive steps, but we have so far to go.
As I write this, it’s International Women’s Day, part of Women’s History Month. But instead of talking about women in the past, I want to talk about how today’s women can make history and what they must do to succeed.
- Fix pay inequality: Women still make only 77 cents for every dollar a man makes (White House). This is unacceptable. If you find proof that a male counterpart who does the same job gets paid more than you, report it to the EEOC. This amount varies by occupation, so look up information about your function before lodging a complaint. Knowledge is power. African-American women only earn 64 cents and Latinos 56 cents, so these groups are especially in need of help.
- End domestic violence: Thirty percent of women who have been in at least one relationship report experiencing some sort of physical, emotional, or sexual abuse (WHO). In the US, the number is estimated to be over 10 million women. There are organizations such as the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV) that can help. They also offer volunteer opportunities if you want to get directly involved.
- Combat sexual harassment: As we all know, the world is currently waking up to this problem, but one area that seems to be consistently underreported is the conditions women in the military face. Did you know a woman serving in Iraq or Afghanistan is more likely to be raped by a fellow US soldier than killed in combat? (Protect Our Defenders) We must do better. These brave women put their lives on the line for us every day and should not face this danger. Another area where sexual harassment and sexual-related crimes are not being taken seriously is in our colleges. 223 colleges and universities face Title IX investigations.
- Encourage girls to become engineers, programmers, and similar jobs: By 2020, the US will be facing a shortfall of approximately 1.4 million jobs. However, given the current graduation rates, those high-paying positions are four times more likely to be filled by men (ComputerScience.org). Noteworthy is that girls outnumber boys in Advanced Placement (AP) enrollment in science, foreign languages, and a few more AP subjects. In AP math, however, boys have been consistently outnumbering girls by a large number (Genderstats.org). Girls Who Code is an excellent non-profit resource we can use to encourage our daughters to pursue careers in technology.
- Smash the glass ceiling: Women currently occupy LESS THAN five percent of CEO positions at S&P 500 companies (Catalyst). Of Fortune 500 companies, the number is 6.4 percent (Fortune). Mentoring programs are available, such as Step Up, but clearly more needs to be done.
- Increase representation in government, particularly at the federal level: Of the 535 members of Congress, only around 20 percent are women (Center for American Women in Politics). Out of a total of nine Supreme Court justices, three are women and six are men – twice as many. Only one (Justice Sotomayor – a woman) is Hispanic (Wikipedia). The states don’t do much better, with only six female governors and twelve LT governors. Women even suffer at the local level. Out of the 100 largest cities in the US, only 20 percent have female mayors.
- Help single mothers: One in three single mothers live in poverty, according to the National Women’s Law Center. As a result, over 56 percent of impoverished children come from a single-mother household.
- Eliminate the “double burden” many women still face: What is “double burden”? Simply put, the idea that the woman, even if she works, is still expected to do most of the housework and child-rearing. Even in 2018, this is true, though the gap seems to be narrowing, albeit slowly. Gender ideology, or the idea of what is believed to be appropriate behavior for each sex, still holds us back.
As you can see, women still have a long way to go before we are considered equal in all ways. Women in the US are more fortunate than those in other, less developed countries, but make no mistake – we are not equal. Women still play a subservient role to men.