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  • Emily Mandl

Gender Equality

For centuries, women have been considered inferior to men in many societies around the world. Despite progress made in the fight for gender equality, women continue to face discrimination, leading to fewer opportunities, limited access to resources, and fewer rights than men.

One of the most significant ways in which women have fewer rights than men is in education. Girls and women are often denied access to education, or their education is cut short due to cultural or financial constraints. According to the United Nations, over 130 million girls worldwide are out of school, with poverty and gender-based discrimination being the primary reasons for their exclusion. This lack of education limits women's opportunities for employment, economic stability, and independence.

In the workplace, women face discrimination and unequal treatment, resulting in fewer rights and opportunities than men. Despite laws prohibiting gender-based discrimination in employment, women continue to earn less than men for the same work. In some countries, women are even prohibited from working in certain industries or occupations, further limiting their opportunities for economic advancement.

Christina Carosella explained: “Early in my corporate career, I had the same job as three men — and they each made more than I did. When I discussed it with our boss, he said the guys had wives and families to support, and that I didn’t need as much money since I was single without children. Luckily, later at that same company (in a profit and loss job with a different boss), my compensation was based on results, just like the five men who were also in these roles. This was an issue I faced as the only woman on a 14-person executive team years ago. Many discussions and decisions happened on the golf course or in the men’s room during meeting breaks. I was invited to come to the golf course — but only if I was willing to drive the cart and serve the men beer. Because I declined to be their driver and waitress, I was shut out of the team building. (I’d like to think these scenarios don’t still happen, but they probably do.) Have you heard of the “broken rung?” Studies show that women are not getting promoted to managerial positions, which is the first step toward senior leadership. Therefore, they are stuck in lower-level positions and prevented from advancing — likely due to biased opinions and discrimination toward women in leadership. Throughout my corporate career, mentoring and career progression programs weren’t usually offered to women. Men assumed that female employees would only work until they had children, or that they would prioritize their husbands’ jobs and leave their own when their husbands were relocated.”

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