Gender Prejudice and Discrimination
Discrimination against women is very prevalent in the society.Women are traditionally referred to as the weaker sex and are therefore discriminated on the basis of their sex and gender.However,the United nations convention on the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women has pushed for the protection of women from discrimination.The convention has defined discrimination against women as a violation of the principles of equality and respect to human dignity.It is an obstacle to the participation of women on equal terms with men in the political ,social and economic development of their countries.Discrimination hampers the growth and prosperity of the society and the family.Discrimination against women is fundamentally unjust and constitutes an offense against human dignity.
Areas in which women face discrimination
- The education sector-Women have often been discriminated against by being denied equal conditions of access to, and study in, educational institutions such as universities and vocational, technical and professional schools.They have also been denied equal opportunities to benefit from scholarships and other study grants and access to programmes of continuing education.In addition young girls would traditionally stay at home and help in household chores while the boys went to school
- At work,institutions and companies- Women have been paid less than men for the same amount of work.They have been excluded from getting certain jobs and been denied promotions on the basis of their gender.
- In Politics and Elections- Some countries have discriminated women and denied them their right to vote and take part in political affairs.Whereas men in this countries are allowed to vote,women cannot do so since their traditional role is to stay at home and take care of the family.
- In marriage - Women should enter into marriage only with their free and full consent but sometimes this is never the case.Whereas men have a choice of who they want to marry, women and young girls have no say and are sometimes forced into marriage and they therefore have no free choice of a spouse.
- In divorce- Women are in some instances denied their right to equal division of property during a divorce.Traditionally once a woman got married the property would belong to her husband and in the event of a divorce,the husband would carry all the property and leave the wife with little or no property
- In inheritance- In some only men are allowed to inherit their parent’s properties and women are not allowed to do so.A father in most cases would give land to his sons and leave the daughters with none
- In decision making- In most families men are said to be the head of the house and the woman is traditionally supposed to be submissive.This is often translated to mean that the mans words are final and the woman has to go with that without voicing her opinions.A woman cannot also decide on the number of children she wants to have since the man is the one who is traditionally supposed to determine the number of children she should have.