Rights activists advise govt on gender equality matters in Covid-19

21Jul 2021
Alima Nkwong, HMC
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
Rights activists advise govt on gender equality matters in Covid-19

RIGHTS activists have advised government and other stakeholders to pay high consideration to gender sensitivity when handling post COVID-19 interventions given the fact that these groups of people are more exposed to the impact of the pandemic.

According to the National coordinator of the Tanzania Human Rights Defenders Coalition (THRDC) Onesmo Olengurumwa an inclusive approach will be sagacious especially as global reports proves that COVID interventions have been of extra harm to the women and children who he said form a part of the vulnerable groups.

“We should make sure that all the key community groups are reached while ensuring that those that are susceptible are also given a special program” he said

He underscored that during the lock down women had cumbersome role to take care of within the family milieu and as a result they find themselves over burdened

“Gender Based Violence (GBV) related challenges hiked during the lock down as per reports, causing much challenges to be directed to women” he emphasized

Olengurumwa stressed that women being the larger occupants in local markets were heavily affected by some of the COVID-19 measures as most of them experienced a drastic fall in their activities which also affected their income level suggesting that in case subsidies are to be considered to boast and revive these petite traders, women and youth should be given the top priority.

“Interventions taken to address COVID-19 impacts should be of higher consideration to women in the formal sector, including other vulnerable groups like youths and children” he intoned.

Considering the fact that women being the most populated gender in the country makes it evident on how important their efforts through their different circular activities and in the family helps to contribute to the country’s economic growth.

Researches have shown that disease outbreaks affect women and men differently, and pandemics make existing inequalities for women and girls and discrimination of other marginalized groups such as persons with disabilities and those in extreme poverty, worse. This needs to be considered, given the different impacts surrounding detection and access to treatment for women and men.

Women represent 70 per cent of the social sector workforce globally and special attention should be given to how their work environment may expose them to discrimination, as well as thinking about their sexual and reproductive health and psycho-social needs as front line health workers.

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