Gender inequalities and poverty are intrinsically linked, and form part of a vicious cycle. Because of gender inequalities, women have access to fewer resources, are less-well paid and have more precarious jobs, if they manage to access the job market at all. Poverty leads women to more frequent instances of violence and discrimination, including in access to justice or access to healthcare. Depending on various criteria such as age, ethnic origin or disability, some women have even higher risks to live in poverty and to experience discrimination.
Because of their mandate and the scope of their work, equality bodies can often help identify the specific needs and injustices suffered by various groups of women in poverty. Therefore, they can assist them when they are victims of unfair treatment. But in order to do that, they need to be better informed of the issues faced by these women and to engage in a constructive dialogue with them.
On 22 October 2020, Equinet organised, together with the Institute of Women and for Equal Opportunities in Spain, an online roundtable to create space for discussion on breaking the cycle of women in poverty. The event aimed to build bridges by bringing together equality bodies and civil society organisations working on women in poverty.
The objectives of the event were to:
By hearing concrete examples, equality bodies and organisations of women in poverty aimed to gain a better understanding of the issues and develop potential actions to address the injustices and inequalities, and ultimately better assist women in poverty.
Cristina Rovira from Oxfam gave a keynote speech, explaining the phenomenon of poverty. See her presentation in English here. Following that, we heard perspectives from:
This was followed by a reaction from Marija Babovic, European Anti-Poverty Network Working Group on Gender Equality and a focus on the work on mandate of equality bodies and how they can help women in poverty by Beatriz Gimeno, head of the Spanish Institute of Women and Equal Opportunities.
Finally, Moana Genevey, Equinet’s policy officer dedicated to gender equality, wrapped up with concluding remarks.
Please contact Moana Genevey (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you have any questions regarding this event.