Ryder who stated this in a statement marking this year’s International Women’s Day added that this challenge effectively penalizes women for their reproductive role, stressing that risks and opportunities for women often vary depending on their colour, religion, social origin or skill levels.
However, he said the situation is not all gloom as countries across the world continue to adopt policies that reduce discrimination against women.
“There has been notable progress in the area of national legislation with most countries having incorporated the principles of equality and non-discrimination.
“Many governments have adopted active labour market policies to tackle discrimination against women and a growing number of employers’ and workers’ organizations are implementing initiatives on equal opportunity and treatment. A number of individual women have managed to advance and to break through the glass ceiling,” Ryder said.
Speaking on the challenges still facing women, he said , “Stubborn and often profound gaps persist. Progress in increasing women’s labour market participation has been uneven according to our 2014 Global Employment Trends Report.
“Occupational sex-segregation and gender pay gaps persist. Women are over-represented in the informal economy, precarious work, and in low-paid jobs. For example in South-East Asia and the Pacific, vulnerable employment in 2013 affected women most (63.1 per cent as compared to 56 per cent for men). In the formal economy women’s share of decision-making posts remains low notwithstanding a pool of talent.
“Services to assist women and men in balancing work and family responsibilities – particularly state-funded and quality childcare – are unavailable or inaccessible for many. Such care still largely falls on the shoulders of girls and women,” he said.