International Labour Organization (ILO)
*Women in labour markets: Measuring progress and identifying challenges* [5 March 2010]
[full-text, 102 pages]
This report uses labour market indicators to measure progress or lack of progress towards the goal of gender equality in the world of work and identify where and why blockages to labour market equity continue to exist.
The report focuses on the relationship of women to labour markets and compares employment outcomes for men and women to the best degree possible, given the latest available labour market indicators from the ILO Key Indicators of the Labour Market. The main findings highlight a continuing gender disparity in terms of both opportunities and quality of employment. There have certainly been areas of improvement particularly in raising female participation but, in general, the circumstances of female employment – the sectors where women work, the types of work they do, the relationship of women to the job, the wages they receive – bring fewer gains to women than are brought to the typical working male.
Press Release 5 March 2010
*More women choosing to work, but gender equality remains a long way off*
GENEVA (ILO News) – Despite signs of progress in gender equality over the past 15 years, there is still a significant gap between women and men in terms of job opportunities and quality of employment, according to a new report by the International Labour Office (ILO).
The report, entitled “Women in labour markets: Measuring progress and identifying challenges”, says that more than a decade after the 4th World Conference on Women in Beijing adopted an ambitious global platform for action on gender equality and women’s empowerment, gender biases remain deeply embedded in society and the labour market.
The ILO report shows that the rate of female labour force participation has increased from 50.2 to 51.7 per cent between 1980 and 2008, while the male rate decreased slightly from 82.0 to 77.7 per cent. As a result, the gender gap in labour force participation rates has narrowed from 32 to 26 percentage points.
The increases in female participation were seen in all but two regions, Central and South-Eastern Europe (non-EU), and the CIS countries and East Asia, with the largest gain seen in Latin America and the Caribbean. In almost all regions, though, the rate of increase has slowed in recent years. It was in the 1980s and early ‘90s that gains in numbers of economically active women were strongest.
At the same time, the share of women in wage and salaried work has grown from 42.8 per cent in 1999 to 47.3 per cent in 2009, and the share of vulnerable employment decreased from 55.9 per cent to 51.2 per cent.
**************************************** Stuart Basefsky Director, IWS News Bureau Institute for Workplace Studies Cornell/ILR School 16 E. 34th Street, 4th Floor New York, NY 10016
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