A recent survey has found gender inequality is still rife in various aspects of Australian society, including education.
The survey conducted by charities Plan Australia and Our Watch asked 600 females to look at why women are still experiencing inequality.
The survey found that despite some minor progression in gender equality, many women still believe they are constantly discriminated against due to their gender.
More than two-thirds of young women in Australia believe gender inequality is a persistent problem. While only eight per cent of women surveyed believe they are treated the same as boys.
Almost one-third of women agreed with the statement: “Girls should not be out in public places after dark.”
After hearing about recent murders and violent attacks on women, Melbourne school teacher Isabella Kottek said she is scared to go out at night.
“It makes me feel really mad and helpless knowing that if I were confronted by a larger male figure, I would have very little chance successfully defending myself physically,” she told The Newsroom.
The young women in the survey were asked a range of questions about their life experiences and what they thought were important areas for change.
The key areas women were concerned about were; everyday experiences of gender equality, inequality and sexism, personal safety, sexual health and reproductive rights.
One-third of women surveyed agreed it would be easier to get their dream job if they were male.
In 2015, Australia signed an agreement which outlined a range of global goals and targets. The Sustainable Development Goals, adopted by world leaders, aimed to improve issues such as gender inequality, injustice, and sustainability.
The survey showed the pay gap between men and women who work full-time is a staggering 16.2 per cent.
Despite these bleak statistics, Ms Kottek said that programs are being introduced into schools to help boost participation in science and technology courses.
“Luckily, there is a gradual rise in STEAM (Science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics) programs targeted at girls and women to help create positive experiences in typically male-dominated fields,” Ms Kottek said.
According to the surveys’ researchers, there is not enough research or quantitative data on gender inequality for the Australian government to specifically target the problems faced by women. – Report and photo by Megan Simmonds
Cartoon by Melissah Dierickx-Bosmans.