Empowerment of women


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Ways of empowering women in the context of present Indian social background.

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Empowerment of women

  1. 1. Women Empowerment Dr. Gopalrao, M.D. Ph.D. Professor & Head, Deparment of Community Medicine
  2. 2. Objectives      At the end of the lecture students should learn The Process of empowering What is Social empowerment Economic empowerment Political empowerment
  3. 3. Continued….  Of the 1.3 billion people who live in absolute poverty around the globe, 70 percent are women.  For these women, poverty doesn’t just mean scarcity and want. It means rights denied, opportunities curtailed and voices silenced.
  4. 4.  Consider the following:  Women work two-thirds of the world’s working hours, according to the United Nations Millennium Campaign to halve world poverty by the year 2015.  The overwhelming majority of the labor that sustains life – growing food, cooking, raising children, caring for the elderly, maintaining a house, hauling water – is done by women, and universally this work is accorded low status and no pay.
  5. 5.  Women earn only 10 percent of the world’s income. Where women work for money, they may be limited to a set of jobs deemed suitable for women – invariably low-pay, low-status positions.  Women own less than 1 percent of the world’s property. Where laws or customs prevent women from owning land or other productive assets, or from having the right to share in-law’s property or to own their home, they have no assets to leverage for economic stability and cannot invest in their own or their children’s futures
  6. 6.  Women make up two-thirds of the estimated 876 million adults worldwide who cannot read or write; and girls make up 60 percent of the 77 million children not attending primary school.  Education is among the most important drivers of human development.
  7. 7.  India stands 53 with score of 3.27 in gender gap rating  is a long term process occurring at international, national, community, & individual level.  A fashionable & buzz word  Decentralization of authority & power  Aims – participation of deprived sections in decision making  Voice to voiceless  Draft National Policy for Empowerment of women 1996 describes……
  8. 8.  “A synergy of development measures will be effected & affirmative action designed for holistic Empowerment of women. Women will be given complete & equal access to & control over factors contributing to such Empowerment, particularly, health, education, information, lifelong learning self development, vocational skills, employment& income earning opportunities, technical services, land & other forms of property, including through inheritance & matrimony, comman property resourses, credit, technology & markets, etc’’
  9. 9.  Means that they can take decisions about their life, their children & family & also contribute to the community decisions, where women’s right to personhood, bodily integrity is respected where their reproductive rights, social economic & political rights are respected, i.e. their work & contribution to family, society is recognised , where there is no fear of sexual & social violence, where women feel a sense of acceptance & belonging, where their rights to their home & to their children as guardians is respected.
  10. 10.  Equal status to women  The principle of gender equality is enshrined in the Indian Constitution in its Preamble, Fundamental Rights, Fundamental Duties and Directive Principles.  The Constitution not only grants equality to women, but also empowers the State to adopt measures of positive discrimination in favour of women.
  11. 11.  Process in empowering women  Central Social Welfare Board 1953-to implement welfare measures for women.  3rd five year plan- women’s education was a key strategy  4th five year plan-main emphasis was on family planning & mass education to reduce birth rate
  12. 12.  From the Fifth Five Year Plan (1974-78) onwards has been a marked shift in the approach to women’s issues from welfare to development.  Emphasized the training of the women through income generation & functional literacy programme to make women more productive on public as well as domestic front.
  13. 13.  6th five year plan-contained for the first time in India’s planning history a separate chapter on women & development.  For the first time, government agreed to issue joint titles of ownership of key development assets such as land, housing, animals & other units of economic production to husbands & wives.
  14. 14.  In 1985,a separate Department of Women & Child Development was created in the Human Resource Development Ministry.  Oversee the implementation of programmes including employment & income generation, education, training, legal support ect
  15. 15.  The Department of Women & Child development formulated National Perspective Plan ( NPP ) for women 1988-2000, which presents long term comprehension policy for Indian women & a frame work in integrating women in country’s development process.
  16. 16.  The National Commission for Women was set up by an Act of Parliament in 1990 to safeguard the rights and legal entitlements of women.  The 73rd and 74th Amendments (1993) to the Constitution of India have provided for reservation of seats in the local bodies of Panchayats and Municipalities for women, laying a strong foundation for their participation in decision making at the local levels.
  17. 17.  India has also ratified various international conventions and human rights instruments committing to secure equal rights of women.  The Mexico Plan of Action (1975), Copenhagen (1980 ) the Nairobi Forward Looking Strategies (1985), the Beijing Declaration as well as the Platform for Action (1995) followed by Beijing + 5 ( 2000).  Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) in 1993.
  18. 18.        Social Empowerment of Women Education And literacy Obstacle for empowerment- dismal educational level in women Equal access to education for women and girls should be ensured ‘‘Education as the Fundamental Right’’- Gov’s concern fulfil constitutional commitment ‘‘Education for All’’ by 2007 Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA); launched in 2000, efforts are being made to reach the unreached women & girl child  Vocational education at secondary educational level for women is important area under National Education Policy by establishing more women Industrial Training Institutions.
  19. 19.  “Education for Women Equality’’ advocated by national policy on education in 1986 ( revised in 1992)-reducing the gender gap in the secondary & higher education levels  Directly or indirectly towards in making women & adolescent girls literateNational Literacy Mission, Rural Functional Literacy Project, Mahila Samakhya , Shisha Karmi Yojana.  These schemes & programmes have drawn national & international attention.
  20. 20. Continued….  Health  A holistic approach to women’s health which includes both nutrition and health services  special attention should be given to the needs of women and the girl at all stages of the life cycle.  The reduction of infant mortality and maternal mortality, which are sensitive indicators of human development, is a priority concern.  Janani Suraksha Yojana – safe motherhood intervention under NRHM – reducing IMR & MMR  RCH – also working with same objectives.
  21. 21. Continued….  Women should have access to comprehensive, affordable and quality health care.  Measures should be adopted that take into account the reproductive rights of women to enable them to exercise informed choices, their vulnerability to sexual and health problems together with endemic, infectious and communicable diseases such as malaria, TB, and water borne diseases as well as hypertension and cardio-pulmonary diseases.
  22. 22. HIV and AIDS  HIV/AIDS increasingly has a young women's face. Today, over 60 per cent of 15–24 year olds living with HIV/AIDS are women  UNIFEM & National Policy for Women's Empowerment 2001 focuses on enhancing HIV/AIDS policies and translating them into effective strategies on the ground.  Strict implementation of Registration of Births and Deaths sould be ensured and registration of marriages should be made compulsory. –the Registration of Birth & Deaths Act, 1969.
  23. 23. Continued….  The Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act 1971& the MTP rules & regulations 2003- this law provides the liberalised conditions for the women to seek abortion.  The Maternity Benefit Act 1961-protect & empower women as workers.  Prevents unfair employment practices & exploitation  Safeguards the health & well being of the mother & child.
  24. 24. Continued….  In accordance with the commitment of the National Population Policy (2000) to population stabilization, this Policy recognizes the critical need of men and women to have access to safe, effective and affordable methods of family planning of their choice and the need to suitably address the issues of early marriages and spacing of children.
  25. 25. Nutritional status  Nutrition  high risk of malnutrition and disease that women face at all the three critical stages viz., infancy and childhood, adolescent and reproductive phase, focussed attention should be paid to meeting the nutritional needs of women.  This is also important in view of the critical link between the health of adolescent girls, pregnant and lactating women with the health of infant and young children.  Nutritional Program for Adolescent Girls 2003  Girls weigh less than 35 kg & pregnant women weigh less than 40 kg & below poverty line – entitled ration of 6 kg / month free of cost in the form of wheat or rice
  26. 26. Continued….  Scheme for Adolescent Girls ( kishori shakti yojana)  Launched by the Department of Women & Child Development, Ministry of Human Resource Development 1991  All girls 11-18 years  Services- watch over menarche  Immunization  General health check up once in every 6 month  Deworming, prophylactic measures against anemia, goiter, vit deficiency  Referral services
  27. 27. Continued….  House hold food security & nutrition security through Targeted Public Distribution System & micronutrient deficiency integrated with ICDS to improve nutrition  Special efforts should be made to tackle the problem of macro and micro nutrient deficiencies especially amongst pregnant and lactating women as it leads to various diseases and disabilities – National Nutrional Anemia Prophylaxis Program.
  28. 28. Legislative provisions  Rights of the Girl Child  All forms of discrimination against the girl child and violation of her rights should be eliminated by undertaking strong measures both preventive and punitive within and outside the family.  Pre-conception & pre-natal diagnostic techniques( prohibition of sex selection) Act, 1994 regulates investigation for sex determination of foetus before & after conception.  strict enforcement of laws against prenatal sex selection and the practices of female foeticide, female infanticide, child marriage, child abuse and child prostitution etc.
  29. 29. Continued….  Marriage related laws Special Marriage Act, 1954  Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961- prohibit the giving & taking of dowry  Child Marriage Restraint( Amendment ) Act, 1976  The Commission of Sati ( prevention ) Act 1987  The Family Court Act, 1984- to promote reconciliation & secure speedy settlements of disputes relating to marriage & family affairs
  30. 30. Continued….  Launched Balika Samridhi Yogana on 2 oct 1997 to promote survival & care of girl child  Objective- female & community attitudes towards the girl child  Encourages enrolment & retention of girls in school, financial support to girls attending school  Cash incentive of Rs 500 is awarded at the birth of girl child of birth order 1 or 2
  31. 31. Continued….  Violence against women  All forms of violence against women, physical and mental, whether at domestic or societal levels, including those arising from customs, traditions or accepted practices should be dealt effectively with a view to eliminate its incidence.  In India, a numbers of NGOs & individuals have been involved  Stree Aadhar Kendra  Working on women's right
  32. 32. Continued….  Zero violence zone  Aimed at complete eradication  Concept is- encourage people to take part in eradicating violence from their localities  Support from UNIFEM, ASTHA, SEWA  Lok Adalat ( People’s court )  The Criminal Law Amendment Act ,1983
  33. 33. Continued….  PROVISIONS UNDER THE INDIAN PENAL CODE, 1860  Section 318- Concealment of birth by secret disposal of dead bodySection 372-Selling of girls for prostitution  Section 376 - Rape  Section 377- Unnatural Offences
  34. 34. Continued….  The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act 2005 was brought into force by the Indian government from October 26, 2006.  Is a comprehensive law & addresses all issues related to women  It is for the first time that an act has been made to address women’s issues in such detail.
  35. 35. Continued….  In trafficking & prostitution  Joint Women's Programme  Started in 1977, first to conduct surveys, establish contact with source & destination points, & also attempt familiarization with local circumstances  Efforts to combat total system of oppression & exploitation is therefore comprehension in nature
  36. 36. Continued….  2 pronged action adopted  Crèche cum balwadi – children of prostitutes followed by admission when they attain 6 years of age  Mahila Mandals- health related interventions & education, legal education & action, organizing to demand for citizen’s right & basic needs, police protection for both women & children rescue where possible
  37. 37. Continued….  The Immoral Traffic Prevention Act 1956  Indecent Representation of Women Act & National Commission For Women Act (1993) – set up commissions both at central & state levels to recommend on policies & legislations concerning women & investigate cases of human rights & other violations against women  National Human Rights Commission – it has special programmes to sensitize law enforcement agencies to human rights
  38. 38. Continued….  Women’s Cells in Police Stations, Encourage Women Police Stations Family Courts, Mahila Courts, Counselling Centers, Legal Aid Centers and Nyaya Panchayats should be strengthened and expanded to eliminate violence and atrocities against women.
  39. 39. Oppertunities  Economic Empowerment of women  Poverty Eradication  Since women comprise the majority of the population below the poverty line and are very often in situations of extreme poverty, given the harsh realities of intra-household and social discrimination.  The Equal Remuneration Act 1955 amended in 1976
  40. 40. Continued….  Women's Empowerment is critical to the socioeconomic progress of the community and, bringing women into the mainstream of national development has, therefore, been a major concern of the Government.  The Ministry of Rural Development has special components for Women in its programmes and funds are earmarked as "Women's Component" to ensure flow of adequate resources for the same.
  41. 41.  The major Schemes, having Women's Component, (implemented by the Ministry of Rural Development during the last three years) include the  Swarnjayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana(SGSY),  Jawahar Gram Samridhi Yojana (JGSY),  Indira Awas Yojana (IAY),  National Social Assistance Programme (NSAP),  Restructured Centrally Rural Sanitation Programme, the  Accelerated Rural Water Supply Programme,  (erstwhile) Integrated Rural Development Programme (IRDP), the (erstwhile) Development of Women and Children in Rural Areas (DWCRA)  and Jawahar Rozgar Yojana (JRY).
  42. 42.  SGSY: The Swarnjayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana,  launched with effect from April 1, 1999,  holistic programme covering various aspects of self-employment, such as  organisation of the poor into self-help groups, training, credit, technology, infrastructure and marketing
  43. 43.  It is envisaged that 50 percent of the Groups formed in each Block should be exclusively for women.  Under this Scheme, women are encouraged in the practice of thrift and credit which enables them to become self-reliant.  Through assistance in the form of Revolving Fund, Bank Credit and Subsidy, the Yojana seeks to integrate women in the economy by providing increasing opportunities of self-employment.
  44. 44.  JGSY: The Jawahar Gram Samridhi Yojana (JGSY)  Launched with effect from April 1, 1999,  twin objectives of creation of demand-driven 1. community village infrastructure and the 2. generation of supplementary employment (for the unemployed poor) in the rural areas.  Wage-employment under the JGSY is extended to below poverty line families.  It is stipulated that 30 percent of the employment opportunities should be reserved for women.
  45. 45.  IAY : The Indira Awas Yojana (IAY)  aims at providing assistance for the construction of houses for people 'Below the Poverty Line' in rural areas.  Under the Scheme, priority is extended to widows and unmarried women.  It has been laid down that IAY houses are to be allotted in the name of women members of the household or, alternatively, in the joint names of husband and wife
  46. 46.  NSAP: The National Social Assistance Programme (NSAP),  which came into effect five years back represents a significant step towards introducing  National Policy for Social Assistance benefits to households 'Below the Poverty Line', with a major focus on women.
  47. 47.      The NSAP has three components, namely, the National Old Age Pension Scheme, the National Family Benefit Scheme and the National Maternity Benefit Scheme. The National Maternity Benefit Scheme is exclusively aimed at assisting expectant mothers by providing them Rs.500 each for the first two live births.
  48. 48.  National Family Benefit Scheme,  Central Assistance of Rs.10,000  bereaved family in the case of death of the primary breadwinner due to natural or accidental causes.  Women are also beneficiaries under this Scheme.
  49. 49.  Revised Widow’s Pension Scheme  Widow between 18-60 years is entitled to Rs 500 per month  Additional Rs 80 per minor child up to 2 children
  50. 50.  CRSP: The Restructured Centrally Sponsored Rural Sanitation Programme (RCRSP),  launched with effect from 1st April, 1999,  provides for the construction of sanitary latrines for rural households.  Where individual household latrines are not feasible, provision exists for construction of village sanitary complexes exclusively for women, to ensure privacy/ dignity.  Upto 10 percent of the allocated fund can be utilised for construction and maintenance of public latrines for women.
  51. 51.  The erstwhile Scheme of Development of Women and Children in Rural Areas (DWCRA),  now merged with the SGSY,  was intended to raise the income level of women of poor households so as to enable organised participation by them in social development for economic selfreliance.  The primary thrust was the formation of groups of 1050 women from poor households at the village level for delivery of services like credit and skill training and cash and infrastructure support for selfemployment
  52. 52.  Micro Credit  In order to enhance women’s access to credit for consumption and production, the establishment of new, and strengthening of existing micro-credit mechanisms and microfinance institution should be undertaken so that the outreach of credit is enhanced.
  53. 53.  The prime minister initiated the Mahila Sammriddhi through the Post Office Networkfacilitating the opening of savings accounts in the name of rural women.  Asset for the rural women- great prestige  Augment savings
  54. 54. Political committment  The right to vote had been granted to Indian Women in 1929.  Committee on Status of women in India; 1971-demand for greater representation of women in political institutions.  The Constitutional (73rd Amendment) Act, 1992, provides for reservation of elective posts for women.  It has been provided that not less than one-third of total number of posts of Members and Chairpersons at all three tiers .
  55. 55.  Panchayati Raj Institutions (i.e. Gram Panchayat, Intermediate Panchayat and District Panchayat) shall be reserved for women.  At present, there are 6,81,258 women elected to Gram Panchayats; 37,109 women to Panchayat at intermediate level and 3153 women to Panchayat at district level.
  56. 56.  Orientation training for elected representatives of Panchayati Raj Institutions is primarily the responsibility of the State Governments/Union Territory Administrations.  The Constitution has placed enormous responsibility on the Panchayats to formulate and execute various programmes of economic development and social justice, and a number of Centrally Sponsored Schemes are being implemented through Panchayats
  57. 57.  The National Alliance of Women’s Organisation ( NAWO) organised a National consultation on Mainstreaming Women’s Agenda into Electoral Politics on march 21 1996  For the first time women coming together as political entities, drafted a Women’s Manifesto  The manifesto demanded 30-35 % reservation for women in local, state, & national level political institutions, an end to criminalisation of politics.
  58. 58.  NATIONAL POLICY FOR THE EMPOWERMENT OF WOMEN (2001)  Goal and Objectives  The goal of this Policy is to bring about the advancement, development and empowerment of women. The Policy will be widely disseminated so as to encourage active participation of all stakeholders for achieving its goals.  Specifically, the objectives of this Policy include….
  59. 59.  (i) Creating an environment through positive economic and social policies for full development of women to enable them to realize their full potential  (ii) The de-jure and de-facto enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedom by women on equal basis with men in all spheres – political, economic, social, cultural and civil
  60. 60.  (iii) Equal access to participation and decision making of women in social, political and economic life of the nation  (iv) Equal access to women to health care, quality education at all levels, career and vocational guidance, employment, equal remuneration, occupational health and safety, social security and public office etc
  61. 61.  v) Strengthening legal systems aimed at elimination of all forms of discrimination against women  (vi) Changing societal attitudes and community practices by active participation and involvement of both men and women.  (vii) Mainstreaming a gender perspective in the development process.
  62. 62.  (viii) Elimination of discrimination and all forms of violence against women and the girl child; and  (ix) Building and strengthening partnerships with civil society, particularly women’s organizations
  63. 63.  Operational Strategies  Action Plans  All Central and State Ministries will draw up time bound Action Plans for translating the Policy into a set of concrete actions, through a participatory process of consultation with Centre/State Departments of Women and Child Development and National /State Commissions for Women. The Plans will specifically including the following:
  64. 64.  ) Measurable goals to be achieved by 2010.  ii) Identification and commitment of resources.  iii) Responsibilities for implementation of action points.  iv) Structures and mechanisms to ensure efficient monitoring, review and gender impact assessment of action points and policies.  v) Introduction of a gender perspective in the budgeting process
  65. 65.  The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), adopted in 1979 by the UN General Assembly, is often described as an international bill of rights for women.  Consisting of a preamble and 30 articles, it defines what constitutes discrimination against women and sets up an agenda for national action to end such discrimination.
  66. 66.  The Convention defines discrimination against women as "...any distinction, exclusion or restriction made on the basis of sex which has the effect or purpose of impairing or nullifying the recognition, enjoyment or exercise by women, irrespective of their marital status, on a basis of equality of men and women, of human rights and fundamental freedoms in the political, economic, social, cultural, civil or any other field."
  67. 67.  The Convention is the only human rights treaty which affirms the reproductive rights of women and targets culture and tradition as influential forces shaping gender roles and family relations.  It affirms women's rights to acquire, change or retain their nationality and the nationality of their children.  States parties also agree to take appropriate measures against all forms of traffic in women and exploitation of women
  68. 68.  States Parties shall take in all fields, in particular in the political, social, economic and cultural fields, all appropriate measures, including legislation, to ensure the full development and advancement of women , for the purpose of guaranteeing them the exercise and enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms on a basis of equality with men.
  69. 69.  Article 6 States Parties shall take all appropriate measures, including legislation, to suppress all forms of traffic in women and exploitation of prostitution of women.  Article 7 States Parties shall take all appropriate measures to eliminate discrimination against women in the political and public life of the country and, in particular, shall ensure to women, on equal terms with men, the right
  70. 70.  Article 12 1. States Parties shall take all appropriate measures to eliminate discrimination against women in the field of health care in order to ensure, on a basis of equality of men and women, access to health care services, including those related to family planning.
  71. 71.  UNIFEM is the women's fund at the United Nations. It provides financial and technical assistance to innovative programmes and strategies to foster women's empowerment and gender equality.  UNIFEM focuses its activities on four strategic areas: (1) reducing feminized poverty, (2) ending violence against women, (3) reversing the spread of HIV/AIDS among women and girls, and (4) achieving gender equality in democratic governance in times of peace as well as war
  72. 72.  All UNIFEM programmes support women’s human rights, because women suffer from the denial of these rights in all regions of the world.  Women’s rights are violated wherever they are poorer than men, confront discrimination in access to land and employment, or don’t participate in the decisions that affect their lives.
  73. 73.  Fourth World Conference on Women( FWCW)  Beijing, China - September 1995 Action for Equality, Development and Peace  BEIJING DECLARATION.  Determined to advance the goals of equality, development and peace for all women everywhere in the interest of all humanity,  Acknowledging the voices of all women everywhere and taking note of the diversity of women and their roles and circumstances, honouring the women who paved the way and inspired by the hope present in the world's youth,
  74. 74.  Ensure the full implementation of the human rights of women and of the girl child as an inalienable, integral and indivisible part of all human rights and fundamental freedoms  Women's rights are human rights
  75. 75.  The empowerment and advancement of women, including the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion and belief, thus contributing to the moral, ethical, spiritual and intellectual needs of women and men, individually or in community.
  76. 76.  How Health Care System Can Respond  At Community level  Typical staff includes- community health wokers,traditional birth attendants,  First order response- integrate lessons on abuse, sexuality, healthy relationship training  Active community changes agents- role play, posters, community events, workshops, support groups,  Accompany women to the police & medical examiners office
  77. 77.  At Primary Care Level  Typical staff – nurses, ANM, Midwives  Train the staff to identify & respond appropriately to victims abuse  Facilitate linkage with local women’s group  Display posters & pamphlets in waiting areas
  78. 78.      Polyclinic or hospital level Staff include- GP, Medical specialists, social workers. Initiate active screening for abuse Organize self help support group for women Coordinate with local women’s group to have an advocate on call  Establish specialized services for victims of sexual assault, including proper collection of forensic evidence
  79. 79. Thank You