International Women’s Day
What a crazy year 2020! Going all around we are back to the 8th March, the International Women’s day.
Why is it so important to promote equality between the genders? Why is it important to promote International Women’s day? One simple answer would be the fact that girls as much as boys need role models and the best role models for young girls are women. It is important to break stereotypes and the notion of what a woman’s role in society is, so that these young girls can believe that they are capable of being whatever they want and do whatever they are best at. Now more than ever, this is crucial for society’s growth, as having both male and female points of view for the current global issue allows a wider sphere of ideas that helps tackle global problems faster and more easily.
The COVID-19 outbreak has been both positive and negative in terms of making people aware of the importance of the role of a female in the world. The pandemic has clearly demonstrated the critical role of women researchers in the fight against COVID-19, from advancing the knowledge on the virus to helping create the vaccine against the virus. At the same time, the pandemic also had a significant negative impact on women, contributing to widening the existing gender gap, and revealing even more gender disparities.
This was mainly because when lockdown occurred the childcare had fallen on the shoulders of women as they are expected from the stereotypical point of view to be the one responsible for childcare. This has decreased women’s productivity and advancement in the working world. On the medical environment the decrease in women’s presence has been due to a lack of PPE (personal protective equipment) which is mainly produced in an average male fitting size, leaving females with lack of protections in their working environment. The same goes for the minority groups such as Asians, Blacks, Hispanics who are disproportionately affected by the pandemic. This is because these groups are more likely to become sick (due to poverty or because they belong to a lower societal class) or because they are the ones who care for family members when sick.
Many people are unaware of all the little footsteps that we are taking backwards in gender disparity due to the pandemic, but these steps are accumulating on each other leading to a regression, raising awareness is one way to fight this issue. We have to show to the older and younger generations that childcare and nurture of the family are roles belonging to both males and females, and not just to the latter. Let’s not forget that COVID-19 might be out of our hands, but gender inequality is not.
Be safe and keep others safe.
“My name is Simona Mohammad and I am the second Women in Science Ambassador. My nationality is Italian and my ethnicity is Bengali. I have lived my whole life in Italy and just moved to England a few years ago. I have come to Loughborough to study Natural Sciences. As the Women in Science Ambassador I hope to involve more women in choosing STEM pathways and contribute towards enriching the diversity in Loughborough.”
Women in Science
Encouraging more young women to study science-related subjects