Women’s Rights – What Are They and How Can They Be Achieved?
Women rights are human rights that protect women from violence and ensure their full participation in society. When women are able to achieve their potential in the world, it benefits not only them but also their children and the societies they live in. These rights include legal protection, economic security, and gender equality. The rights are embodied in international conventions and agreements, such as the Beijing Platform for Action and UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women and Peace and Security.
The most essential aspect of women’s rights is legal protection. It is the basis for ensuring that women can participate fully in all aspects of society, including the workforce and the political arena. Women who are able to work can be more economically independent and support their families. Legal measures also help to improve women’s ability to secure housing, health care and education. These measures also allow women to take a greater role in decision making in the family, and can reduce the risks of female-related violence, such as domestic violence and sexual assault.
Economic empowerment is an essential part of women’s rights. It has the power to lift global living standards, promote sustainable development and reduce poverty. When women are able to participate in the economy, they can earn more money, provide better nutrition for their families and improve the overall quality of life for all. Moreover, when women are able to participate in the political arena, they can make decisions that benefit their communities.
In many parts of the world, governments can play an important role in advancing women’s rights. They can remove legal barriers that prevent women from entering the labor force, and they can provide basic gender-friendly services such as safe transport for girls to school and access to affordable health care. Governments can also help to close the gender gap by adopting laws and policies that ensure women are treated fairly in the workplace, including equal pay for equal work.
A major factor in achieving women’s rights is the role of societal structures and traditions. For example, harmful patriarchal traditions such as child marriage rob girls of a chance to pursue their dreams and put them at high risk for disease and death from pregnancy and childbirth. Governments can work to dismantle these structures and traditions by promoting family planning and offering services like health clinics that offer abortions and contraceptives.
Increasingly, people around the world are taking women’s rights seriously. In 34 countries surveyed, majorities or pluralities say it is very important that women have the same rights as men in their country. This includes a strong majority in the United States, where 84% of Americans say it is very important for women to have the same rights as men, including equal pay for equal work and equal legal protections. This is particularly true among those with some college education, as well as Democrats. In contrast, just 48% of Republicans say that women have the same rights as men.