|Posted on 9 December, 2016 at 9:45|
This article was firstly published on the Money Brilliant website.
By Gracia Mukiibi
I always wonder how it would feel like to live in a world of gender parity. Perhaps this is not the point, my concern is whether women are empowering women. It’s certain that we are living in a patriarchal society; where in some parts of the world women have no identity or status. Historically, women have been seen as inferior and servile. Over the years the Western society has changed those views about women. In other parts of the world male dominance is visible to the eye; in Australia it is not as severe. However, equality is believed to be implemented for generations among men and women in Australia, yet it is not completely into practice. From where I come from, women are believed to be second class citizens especially if they have no exposure to education. Coming to Australia enhanced my perspective which extended my horizons and gave me a platform to pursue my dreams as an ambitious woman thus challenging the limited views and stereotypes placed upon women.
Gender pay gaps
Despite how privileged we are in Australia, there’s still a lot of work to be done in order to achieve gender equality. One might argue that we have a female Prime Minister, and many women in Parliament, the reality is, men still outnumber. It reminds me of an important quote which says: “We are all equal and some are more equal than others” (See Animal Farm by George Orwell). Despite the fact that the equal pay legislation was passed in Australia in the 1970s, men and women are still not paid equally for doing the same job. I came across an article that stated “Women in full-time paid work still earn 18% less than men or $1 million less over a lifetime”. However, Australia is doing well compared to many countries, but my concern is that there’s still more work to be done.
I believe too many women have a voice but do not use it! I’ve met so many women who are afraid to take leadership. The world is full of wingers who expect somebody else to make a difference. Perhaps this is a matter of attitude, women normalising the difficulties and injustices they are facing. We need to be problem solvers and implementers not just thinkers and talkers. We have the ability to make a difference and become role models for the upcoming generations.
Social change agents
Therefore, women who can voice themselves should do it effectively! I believe you and I were born for such a time as this to be a voice for the voiceless, and hope for the hopeless. Despite the fact that we are constrained in a male-dominated arena, there are still many avenues that women can use to advance their status and empower other women. Empowerment can be through education, training; advice, words of encouragements or even through bettering themselves. Our life journey can be a great encouragement to others. There are a number of imbalances whether in education, leadership, safety and security, and employment that needs to be improved, if no one speaks up these issues will persist consequently affecting upcoming generations. We need to pass on the knowledge and skills we’ve acquired to other women, so that we can become a network of change makers in all corners of the world.