The United Nations has made “women’s full and effective participation and decision-making in public life” the main theme of its 65th meeting of the Commission on the Status of Women this month. This, they believe, will help end violence and discrimination against women.
In Iran, this would be assessed by looking at life under the ruling religious regime, which has built its power on misogyny and effectively turned women into second-class citizens for the past 40 years through a series of sexist laws and patriarchal practices.
So, let’s look at just some of the other reports on women in Iran that have been done recently to get a sense of where we’re at.
Transparency International ranked Iran 146th out of 180 countries in January, citing in its report widespread corruption, which leads to increased poverty, of which women are the most at risk, and further discriminatory laws and policies that hurt women the hardest.
Meanwhile, the World Economic Forum’s annual report on the gender gap ranked Iran 148th out of 153 countries, with only Pakistan, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, and the Congo having a bigger overall gender gap. The report also ranked Iran 145th for women’s political empowerment and 147th for economic participation opportunities.
The Women’s Committee of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) wrote: “Considering the Iranian women’s high spirit of courage and resistance and the high percentage of women among university students and graduates, it is only natural that they face more frustration and pressure given their current situation… Considering the extent of governmental corruption, and the lack of transparency in governmental reports, the reality is certainly worse.”
Furthermore, regarding the regime’s disastrous handling of the coronavirus pandemic, women are more likely to be affected than men by unemployment for three reasons:
- women are more likely than men to care for kids or sick relatives, which during a pandemic where the schools are closed is very important
- women are more likely to be fired by employers because their contributions are not considered as important as a man’s
- women are more likely to work in areas that will have closed due to safety precautions or be considered a luxury that cannot be afforded right now
Of course, there is no way to improve the situation under the ruling mullahs and the only option for complete gender equality is the total overthrow of the Iranian regime by the people, especially women.