6 ways to help make equality reality in the family

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20 May
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6 ways to help make equality reality in the family

Gender equality in the family is the key to achieving gender equality across society. We must all redouble our efforts to make equality reality in our families, and around the world.

1. End laws that mean mothers lose custody of their children when they remarry

Laws that give preferential right of custody or guardianship over children to the father over the mother discriminate against women and are based on a sex stereotype that views men as superior to women. These laws also limit a mother’s ability to make decisions about the upbringing of her own child.

2. End exceptions for laws that allow girls to be forced into marriage

When young girls are forced to marry, they face potentially lifelong harmful consequences. They are essentially subject to state-sanctioned rape and are at risk of increased domestic violence, forced pregnancy, and negative health consequences while being denied education and economic opportunity.

3. End discriminatory nationality laws

Nationality laws that prevent a woman from passing on citizenship to their foreign spouse on an equal basis with men make families insecure and can result in severe hardships for the family. In addition, the loss of a woman’s nationality on divorce can lead to problems such as statelessness.

4. Value and encourage both parents’ contribution to childcare equally

Unequal parental leave laws assume that the responsibility of childcare falls on women and may end up inhibiting women’s full economic participation.

5. End laws that allow men to beat their wives with impunity

Laws that allow men to “punish” or “correct” their wives sanction violence within the law itself and may perpetuate or promote intimate partner violence against women and girls.

6. Ensure equality in domestic and emotional labor

During the current lockdown many countries are experiencing, many women are taking on the majority of the domestic and emotional labor in households, on top of any paid work they may be doing. If you are safe with whoever you are locked down with, make sure that everyone is taking on their fair share of the emotional and domestic labor.

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