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Gender Pay Gap: Belittling Arab Women’s Efforts Because They Are Not the ‘Breadwinners’

February 16, 2017

The gender pay gap is not an issue that is limited to the Arab World; it has its share of debates worldwide, even in Hollywood. According to the United Nations, “If men and women played an identical role in labor markets, as much as $28 trillion, or 26%, could be added to the global annual GDP by 2015”. In the Arab world, however, the gender pay gap is not the only problem for women when it comes to work. Women are also suffering from social norms and legal restrictions that hinder them from getting full rights at workplaces. This ranges from the lack of promotions to the inability to safely report sexual harassment. According to a report issued by United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in 2016, the feminization of poverty was a result of two factors. The first one is the transition from a state-led development to neo-liberal economics, which has led to a huge gender pay gap as the private sector in the Arab world seeks cheap female labor. The second reason is the emergence of part-time and home-based jobs. The privatization and restructuring of work organizations has led…

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