WOMEN’S UN REPORT NETWORK
Overview –prelude to Covid 19 it was widely felt that due to sever cuts from the austerity policy era that the impact of the pandemic was much more drastic on women.
Background -Before we start we have to acknowledge the circumstances that we find ourselves in at the time the pandemic hit. This has been graver due to the environment created by the austerity measures meted out from 2008 policies. This had already left the care and social sectors in the UK and some parts of the EU seriously underfunded and in a deprived state, therefore unable to provide the support and services they were supposed to. Also impacting the corona virus were the populist based impacts such as Brexit which saw that much needed multilateral co-operation was moving into desperate measures, with insufficient and often isolated unilateral actions to tackle the crisis.
WUNRN EU over the month of April, May and June has been in close consultations with the NGO committees including NGO CSW/UN including Members of the European Parliament, Commission, grass root organisations as well as key civil society organisations to ascertain the crucial impact on women during this crisis. We collected and read the data of the impact and learnt about the key areas of concern and what needs to be relayed to the decision makers, for an informed policy response.
We will be covering the impact felt on;
Women’s Rights and the Sustainable Development Goals
The SDGs were already being compromised in the above described environment with the impact on obtaining the SDGs becoming increasingly difficult. Research and findings show that not only Goal 5 is linked to women, though goal 5 pertains to women as it is titled as ‘gender equality’ if you slice through the goals you see that evaluating the SDGs reveals that they work on intersectional levels, in many cases these are the areas where prevalent forms of ‘feminized’ poverty already existed.
Vulnerable Groups such as; BAME, Widows, Violence against women, Women in conflict
Internationally by and large women were the worst hit by globalisation, conflict, climate change, and severe economic measures imposed on schemes and programmes that supported them and were their life line, programmes that were already stringently financed. In Europe we find programmes related to curbing violence against women have their funding cut and during the crisis alarming figures of domestic violence against women surfaced.
Women in employment-women’s jobs and work, unpaid care
Covid -19 pandemic has illustrated two points very clearly 1 is that the current economic paradigm has failed, governments bail outs have been in trillions, only if that had been spent on infrastructure in the first place, 2nd that women have been the essential force in the fight against the pandemic, supporting and propping up the care and nursing sectors but inadequately paid, if at all remunerated for their work.
If we are to meet any future emergencies and climate emergencies we need to be better prepared and learn lessons from this experience