Coronavirus has hit a big blow across the world with more people getting infected and death surging every day. Now who are the most affected? is it men or women? A UN report says that it is the women who are the most affected.
The UN said that health and social sector constitute about 70 per cent of women. The world organisation said that women also do three times more unpaid care work at home.
UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka said that women are at a higher risk as majority of the health sector workers are women. She said that women, who are parents and also care givers, carry the care of burden.
She noted that a majority of women also work in informal economy. This is a place where health insurance is inadequate or almost non-existent. Moreover, she said that women in this sector did not have a secure income.
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka noted that resources earlier at times of Ebola and Zika were diverted from the services that women need. This was done even when they suffered livelihood loss. She said that women’s access to contraceptives and pre/post natal health care dwindles and this posed a great concern at times of Coronavirus.
The UN body also said that that the economic impact of coronavirus would hit women harder as most of them have low paying, informal and insecure jobs.
Meanwhile UN Women Director of Policy, Programme and Intergovernmental Division Sarah E Hendriks said that they were trying to make sure the gender differential impact of coronavirus is taken into account in the response strategies at all levels. This included gender analysis and sex-disaggregated data collection. This will help in understanding women’s needs.
The UN said that women are at the receiving end with schools closed all over. The mothers are forced to give up their job when children are at home.
Apart from this, the UN said that health workers are often overlooked. UN Women’s Regional Director for Asia and the Pacific Mohammad Naciri said that women health care workers did not get menstrual hygiene products initially.
The World organisation also noted that family violence that impact mostly women may also increase at times of quarantine periods in some communities.