With a score of 67.9 out of 100, the EU is at least 60 years away from reaching complete gender equality, if we continue at the current pace. The latest Gender Equality Index from the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) shows that the EU is improving by just half a point each year.
Among the Member States, Sweden, Denmark and France keep their top spots. The awards for most improved go to Italy, Luxembourg and Malta, with each gaining around 10 points since 2010. Greece, Hungary and Romania are lagging behind the rest.
“We have seen small, steady gains year on year but this time we have a reason for concern. The coronavirus pandemic poses a serious threat to gender equality progress, which we cannot afford. More than ever, policymakers will need to use the results of our Index to design inclusive solutions that promote gender equality in our society, both during and after the pandemic,” said Carlien Scheele, EIGE’s director.
“Gender equality must be sought in all areas of life for all Europeans – regardless of their gender – to reach their full potential. The Gender Equality Index is a crucial tool in this quest as it tracks progress. I congratulate those countries that have improved their score over the past year. Nonetheless, there is still a long road ahead in many aspects, particularly in the digital world. As our present and future are increasingly digital, we need to ensure that women and girls occupy their fair share of this sector and are encouraged to contribute towards its growth. The EU Gender Equality Strategy adopted this year sets out key actions for the next 5 years, to step up the work towards equality and we need to see it through and fully implemented to ensure that women and men can be free, will thrive and lead,” said Helena Dalli, European Commissioner for Equality. Find out more on EIGE website.
This year’s report stressed the importance of care, both formal and informal, from a gender equality perspective, and sheds light on informal care, pointing that “lockdown situations have highlighted that, despite being invisible, devalued and unaccounted for in GDP measures, daily unpaid care shouldered disproportionately by women is essential to the functioning of society”.
2020 Equality Index was launched during an online Conference on the 29 October, during which Eurocarers was invited to share their perspective on the potentialities of ICT-based solutions for informal carers.