International Women’s Day: A Call for Equality in the COVID-19 Era
International Women’s Day (IWD) is celebrated on 8 March every year, reflecting on and honoring women’s courage and determination in all areas of life.
As announced by UN Women, the theme for 2021 IWD is ‘Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world’.
The theme highlights the extraordinary efforts of women standing in the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis. Women are playing outstanding roles as healthcare professionals, caregivers, and leaders fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic and leading the response and recovery efforts. Female leaders in the governments of Denmark, New Zealand, Finland, Germany, and many other countries have raised the bar in this fight and have been recognized for their wisdom, decisiveness, and response to COVID-19. This has shed light on and led to more acceptance than ever before on the importance of women’s contributions, diverse experiences, and perspectives in decision and policymaking.
Despite this, many women are still facing violence, hunger, poverty, illiteracy, and unemployment, highlighting the urgent need for an equal future now more than ever. Around three billion women suffer from not having access to the same jobs as men. In addition, data shows that women are underrepresented in political life, with no more than 13 countries globally having a woman as a head of state or head of government.
International Women’s Day is an opportunity to call for change and gender equality. Let 2021 be the year we overcome all challenges that women still face worldwide.
College of Health Sciences
Abu Dhabi University