Women’s Issues Calling for Change

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Case Western Reserve University gives professionals the tools to bring about change to social and cultural issues in their communities through its online Master of Science in Social Administration.

Sexual Harassment

Hollywood allegations of sexual misconduct in 2017 and 2018 influenced women across the country to raise their voices. An ABC News-Washington Post poll showed the magnitude of inappropriate sexual misconduct women encounter in the U.S. 54 percent of women have experienced unwanted sexual advances at some point in their lives. 30 percent of women reported that these advances occurred at work. 8 in 10 of these work-related issues turned into sexual harassment and one-third of these instances rose to sexual abuse. Many women do not speak up about these instances because they believe male harassers tend to avoid punishment for these actions. Others do not have the financial means to take legal action.

Support and donations from advocates across society, including $13 million raised by 300 female actors, writers and directors in Hollywood, have gone toward financially assisting women in claims against sexual harassment.

Equal Pay

Female activists have been advocating for equal pay over the past few decades. In 2018, the issue persists. According to the Pew Research Center, women earned 83 percent of what men earned for comparable roles in 2015. This would require women to have to work an additional 47 days to earn the same wages as their male counterparts. Some of the causes of this inequality are institutional gender discrimination and the interruption family caregiving and motherhood caused on their careers.

As a response, state legislatures are proposing bills to address the wage gap. However, only a few states have passed any new legislation in the past several years.

Gender Equality

Equality activists have focused on injustices across all fields of society. Due to the #MeToo and “Time’s Up” media movements, modern gender issues have gained public interest. 45 music festivals have promised equal representation of men and women by 2022. The state of Virginia elected the nation’s first transgender state legislator, Danica Roem. Countless abusers have been convicted or fired from their jobs as punishment for their offenses.

Political Representation

Women are taking action in the political sphere. Currently, women only make up approximately one-fifth of Congress. However, NPR reported that at least 431 women were running for Congress by Feb. 2018. Less than half of this number ran for Congress prior to the 2016 election.

An increased number of women in political power might help close the gender equality gap. If women have the power to invoke change, perhaps 2018 could become the “Year of the Woman.”

To learn more about important women’s issues in 2018, take a look at our infographic.

Infographic: Women's Issues Calling for Change

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