Press Release

Ukraine to fight gender inequality in education, at work and home

27 January 2021
The United Nations Population Fund in Ukraine in partnership with the Embassy of Sweden in Ukraine and the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration of Ukraine, has launched a three-year project to eliminate gender stereotypes and reduce gender-based violence in Ukraine.
According to the International Gender Gap Index Report 2020, Ukraine ranks 59th out of 153 countries. Gender inequality prevailing in the labor market is one of the most striking examples. Since 2014, the pay gap between men and women has increased from 24% to 26%. The absolute majority of men believe that there is a division into "female" and "male" occupations. In addition to that, more than 40% of men in Ukraine believe that a woman should leave her paid work to spend more time with her family. Only 3% of those who take paternity leave are men (fathers). According to the recent UNFPA Ukraine study, 24% of respondents experienced some forms of domestic violence, among them 81% are women.
“Last year, Ukraine took an important step to ensure equal rights and opportunities for women and men. Joining the Biarritz Partnership, the Ukrainian government undertook the obligation to ensure that both mothers and fathers have equal opportunities to take parental leave, promote gender sensitive education, as well as to ensure effective implementation of legislation on combating domestic violence. The new Swedish-Ukrainian project covers all these areas, and we welcome the consolidation of all the efforts to achieve well-being of Ukrainian society, which will be possible through the provision of the expert assistance to the government and local initiatives implementation”, Olga Stefanishyna, Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration of Ukraine said.
"Women can combine a successful career with a family life if men take equal responsibility for household duties and if lawmakers enact parental leave which treats fathers and mothers equally", Tobias Thyberg, the Ambassador of Sweden to Ukraine.
“Traditional stereotyped gender roles, patriarchal norms limit the capacity and ability of women to fulfill their human rights. A clear example of that happens in the field of education. 80% of IT students are males. The labour market is something where it happens. We want to overcome this. We want Ukraine to really capitalize on all the human capital and human potential that both women and men can provide. And that means that for the next few years we are going to work with our Swedish partners within that these gender roles need to be overcome, so we can leave no one behind", Jaime Nadal, Representative to UNFPA in Ukraine, said.  
"Equality Springboard: Project on Social Norms Change and Gender Stereotypes Elimination for Better Resilience and Prosperity of Women and Men in Ukraine " aimed at boosting the process of social norms change and withdrawal from gender stereotypes in education, at work, at home and in the community life and create supportive environment and growing public demand for advancing equal rights and opportunities for women and men in Ukraine. 
The project includes the following components:
  1. working with youth to overcome gender stereotypes in education and in choosing a future career, including the promotion of STEM among schoolgirls. Providing assistance to teachers to improve their skills and encouraging them to use modern approaches in the learning process, which includes conducting training and development of the online training course for educators on non-discriminatory approach in their work.
  2. working with the corporate sector: development and implementation of policies aimed at maintaining a work-home balance, ensuring equal opportunities for men and women, as well as the implementation of the principles of zero tolerance to domestic violence in companies. Developing an online platform containing tools and practical recommendations for gender mainstreaming in the corporate sector.
  3. working with young families, especially men, to promote conscious parenting and equal distribution of chores, including following activities:
  • opening of 2 fathers’ clubs;
  • advocacy and promotion of the “parental leave” among men.
  1.  supporting GBV survivors:
  • setting up crisis rooms for GBV survivors in 9 cities of Ukraine;
  • conducting IT trainings for GBV survivors, as well as promoting their further employment.
 
Video presentation of the project: