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Progress in the Field of Gender Equality is Insufficient


According to L.Robinson

This year, the annual UN General Assembly was the centerpiece of a two-day summit to assess progress towards the seventeen Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). One of these goals, the commitment to achieve gender equality (SDG 5), is considered the most powerful driver for achieving all the SDGs. Yet, halfway to the 2030 SDG deadline, UN experts say progress towards gender equality is hampered by legal and institutional barriers, deep-rooted bias, unequal political representation, economic inequality, and a lack of legal protections and investments. Success will require renewed, energetic commitment.

An assessment by UN Women and other UN agencies found that none of the fourteen indicators set to measure gender equality have been achieved to date. Only two of these are close to being achieved, and the remaining twelve are “moderately” to “very far” from achieving the 2030 target. Indicators focus on areas such as anti-discrimination laws and protection of legal rights, prevalence of partner violence, child marriage and female genital mutilation, unpaid care and domestic work, political representation, managerial positions, health and reproductive rights, education, land rights, telephone ownership, and government funding and data collection on gender equality.

The assessment also tracks the status of women and girls across other SDGs and found that progress on these goals is behind schedule:

SDG 1: Although extreme poverty has decreased, at current rates, 340 million women and girls will still live in extreme poverty by 2030.
SDG 2: By 2030, a quarter of women and girls will suffer from moderate or severe food insecurity.
SDG 3: An estimated 129 million girls are currently out of school and 110 million will be out of school in 2030.
SDGs 4, 6, 7: Women and girls do not have adequate access to health, water and housing and will continue to suffer from this in 2030. Of particular concern is that progress in reducing maternal mortality has stalled since 2015.
SDG 8: Women have lower labor force participation rates and earn less than men.
SDG 10: 54 percent of countries still have laws that discriminate against women, and women are twice as likely as men to experience discrimination.
SDGs 12–15: Women are disproportionately affected by the impacts of climate change.
SDG 16: The number of women living in conflict zones has increased by 50 percent since 2017.
SDG 17: Only 4 percent of aid targets gender equality as a primary goal.

The report concludes that without a significant increase in commitment and action, most of the targets will not be achieved in 2030.


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