International Women's Day

Comment: Is International Women's Day still up to date?

At the beginning of the year, this was the case again: International Women's Day was just around the corner. And like every year, it became a question: What do we do as trust people? Someone asked privately: Does it even take the day?

I believe that, yes, this day is still useful and important for many reasons. Why? Apart from a few recent political developments in other countries, some of which have seriously deteriorated the situation of girls and women, it is worth taking a critical look at us and putting our own house in order. But women are not as badly off here as they are in other countries? This is true, of course, because in Germany nobody is prevented from going to school because of their gender, or even afraid of going to prison. In purely legal terms, women and men are equal before the law in this country. Until 1977, this was different in Germany: wives had to ask their husbands for permission if they wanted to work in a paid profession (source: Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung).

And how is it today? We have all heard about the gender pay gap between men's and women's pay. According to the Federal Statistical Office, the gap was still 18% in 2022 and has only shrunk by 5% since 2016. "This will keep us at the bottom of Europe", the initiative writes on its website. "Many women are learning occupations that are less well paid, less likely to work in management positions and more likely to work part-time or in mini-jobs". Even under comparable parameters, such as the same occupation, age, etc., a gap of 7% remains. The causes of the pay gap are therefore complex and require just as many measures to close it. There is still something positive to report: compared to other sectors, the pharmaceutical industry is doing relatively well in terms of equal opportunities, according to a study by the Hans Böckler Foundation. Women employed in the pharmaceutical sector, for example, can live independently from their wages and the pay gap with male employees is gratifyingly small at 7%. However, next year we will again celebrate International Women's Day.

Nicola Bister