The majority of women believe that there is still no gender equality in Romania

96% of educated Romanian women* from the urban environment believe that gender equality is not yet achieved in Romania. And 43% of these say they have witnessed inappropriate attitudes and behaviors towards women in the professional environment, including overt harassment. A large proportion of the research participants have heard or known cases of domestic violence, some of them even being victims. This is the conclusion of the study carried out by the Brennan Group for the Solidarity and Equality Association, through Tudor Communications, as part of the #WeAreHalf gender equality awareness campaign.

“For thousands of years, women have not been perceived as equal to men in family life, access to education or business. Although remarkable progress has been made, things are still moving too slowly for results we could all benefit from as a society. When I started this campaign, I mostly heard everywhere that we don’t have such big problems and that it’s not a worthy topic of the public agenda. This is how this study shows that many women hesitate to say directly: the effects of discrimination are very strong in most cases and they affect their health, education, well-being and development. I believe that an awareness of the phenomenon would bring about a profound and real change, and I am sure we want, women and men together. The equal participation of women in the economy, the emotional balance and empathy shown in all spheres of professional activity would take us all 1000 years towards a better future”, said Mihaela Tudor, president of the Solidarity and Equality Association and serial entrepreneur.

In order to draw attention to gender inequality, the Solidarity and Equality Association initiated an extensive education and information campaign, in which hundreds of portraits and stories of outstanding women in fields such as science, technology, engineering, medicine, social entrepreneurship, art and culture or the women’s rights defense, but also photos of women who were in tragic situations (war, exile, domestic violence, various types of discrimination, etc.). The street exhibition takes place between April 6-20, in the outdoor paneling space of the Șuțu Palace (Bucharest City History Museum) as part of the “We Are Half – Stop Cutting Off Women!” campaign.

“Gender equality, diversity and inclusion are concepts increasingly invoked in the international agendas of organizations, economic forums, associations and companies. Gender equality and women’s rights are not a caprice, which we discuss informally, but are fundamental values that underlie a prosperous world that can develop sustainably. Because gender equality changes the perspective in key areas: education, health, social, economy. A better world for women is a better world for all”, said Daniela Palade Teodorescu, editorial director of Feminism for Real and founding member of the association.

What is the perception of educated women in urban Romania regarding gender equality:

• Combating domestic violence and sexual harassment is considered the most important goal of the gender equality movement. Three-quarters of respondents* opt for an individual commitment to the goal and say they would strive to meet this goal on a personal and professional level. Fewer buy into the idea of signing a petition, participating in coordinated actions with others, supporting the cause financially, or participating in peaceful protests. Respondents from rural areas and those with secondary education are more inclined to actively participate in an organization or protests. 86% of educated women from urban areas believe that domestic violence does not only mean physical assault on the woman and only 15% believe that stress is the main cause of domestic violence;

• Regarding the ability of women in management positions in a company, 99% of women believe that women in management positions in a company are at least as capable as men; only 20-25% of respondents believe that HR and PR departments are more suitable for women, while men are better suited in a technical field/department; 98% of urban educated women believe that women are as suitable as men in STEM fields (Science, Technologies, Engineering, Mathematics);

• 87% of educated women from urban areas do not believe that the media exaggerates the extent of domestic violence in Romania. Almost unanimously, there is a need for education against domestic violence starting in school;

• Although cleaning and cooking seem to burden the respondents more than the other household members, household activities are generally shared evenly. Providing living resources, raising children and caring for the elderly are increasingly tasks assumed by all adults in the family.

The study aims to investigate how concepts such as gender equality, feminism and the feminist movement in Romania are perceived, women’s rights and their role in society, domestic violence and its effects, etc. The entire study can be accessed here.

*Respondents to the study conducted by the market research and polling company Brennan Group for the Solidarity and Equality Association are mostly women, urban residents, employed with higher education/manager/entrepreneur, with above average incomes. The study was compiled on the basis of 714 questionnaires.

The study was carried out with the support of: Brennan Group, JTI, Tudor Communications, European Women’s Association, and Feminism for Real.

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