Truly empowering women

GENDER EQUALITY

We seek to move towards a more just world, in which women have the same opportunities and far from what has been socially defined that they “must” do.

A few years into the twenty-first century, Honduras is debating against serious social problems. Poverty and violence draw the profile of a country on the world stage with a marked social fragmentation, crossed by deep inequalities that distance the possibility of achieving goals of social justice, democracy and quality of life, with human rights for all. The imbalances and persistent gap in the human development of women with respect to men, by the mere condition of gender, probably raises the biggest and most widespread barrier to overcoming poverty and violence.

Women constitute 51.4% of the total population, 52.1% of people of working age, perform 94% of domestic reproductive work that supports family units throughout the country, represent 33.7% of the economically active population, they contribute 51.2% of the mercantile and non-commercial work, and are headed by the head of one out of every four homes nationwide. Instead, they occupy less than 10% of the deputations in the National Congress, receive on average an income equivalent to 42% of what men earn, and have limited access to property and control of economic and productive resources.

Gender violence is a scourge that acquires widespread dimensions in the country, as well as in the Mesoamerican region. The increase in femicides contrasts with prevailing impunity and citizen insecurity. This has serious consequences for the life and the exercise of the human rights of women in the domestic and public sphere.

Public policies overemphasize the instrumental role of women as mothers and volunteer workers of the communities in social programs, recharging in them the cost of economic adjustment and cutting public spending. But that role is not valued and, given the feminization of poverty, women’s greater vulnerability is highlighted, making their capacities invisible as protagonists and creators of alternatives.

Faced with this discouraging panorama, what to do, goes through the strengthening of legal bodies, institutional structures and public policies created in the country to advance in the elimination of all forms of discrimination and violence against women, fight poverty, expand citizen political participation of women in equity, and tend to fairer international relations.

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