GENDER EQUALITY AND THE RIGHTS OF WOMEN TO EMPLOYMENT IN CAMEROON
No of pages
|MS Word & PDF|
The custom academic work that we provide is a powerful tool that will facilitate and boost your coursework, grades and examination results. Professionalism is at the core of our dealings with clients
For more project materials and info!
Call us here
BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
Gender equality means that men and women have equal power and equal opportunities for financial independence, education and personal development.
Equality and the protection of women’s rights to employment have been a long time problem that has occasionally been raised by women all over the world for want of their rights to be respected that is generally in society and specifically at the job sites.
This problem generally dates back to the 19th century after the American Revolution (The American civil war) which instilled the idea of freedom in the minds of some women. Before this revolution, the woman was known to do just house chores and raise the children while all the men did the work.
After the revolution, Black women joined the workforce to raise some steady income after they were freed. Later immigrants joined the workforce followed by middle-class white women who also wanted to raise some money for the whole family.
The labour force pertaining to women at that time exposed the racial issues in American society as white women were given better jobs compared to the ones given to Black women. This led to the start-up of some labour unions which opened up to women because more women joined the workforce.
In fact, in the 1880sthe labour union “The Knights of Labour” supported women to have equal pay for work. The struggle for equality was much of a problem for these women.
They were faced with long working hours with poor pay, they also had a lower minimum wage rate than the men and had to balance their family life in addition to all the work.
It was due to this that people such as Lucy Hale and Mother Jones came up to motivate working women in the fight to work equality. During World War II in 1939 when most men were out for the war, a lot of women joined the workforce and some even took on men’s jobs, the government used various propaganda and icons to encourage women into the workforce such as Rosie the Riveter.
At this time women started to feel the power they fought for but this was short-lived as the war came to end and the men returned. Most men were dissatisfied with the fact that women had their jobs back. It was during this time where certain unions and non-profit organisations stood up for the rights of women.
This lasted a couple of years but eventually, women started to feel comfortable entering the workforce all over again, they were starting to gain some degree of equality in the workforce.
Eventually, the Equal Pay Act was enacted and with time women equally started having some male-dominated jobs in America, this change only surfaced around the late 20th century. The fight for equality became stronger as the years went by and the support for women in the workforce kept on increasing till the present date.
Women are generally faced with the problem of inequality due to the fact that before African colonies were being colonised, their societies were generally ruled and dominated by men. With the coming of colonialism in Africa, things only got worse as women were being treated poorly and relegated to the farm or housework while men were given better jobs and, in the case, where women worked with men, they were being paid less.
Such discrimination caused a lot of pain and bitterness in the heart of some African women and feminists causing them to stand up for the rights of women in Africa. This was done by the creation of several gender equality groups such as the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW)
Cameroon as a member of the UN has also been noted for its discrimination against women and gender equality. It was colonised by both Britain and France making it to be oriented in two legal systems, which is the French and English legal systems.
It is also important to note that it has another system of law, which cannot be ignored, and that is the Customary Law system. This is based on the rules of the several ethnic groups in Cameroon which are more than 200in number and are male-dominated that is in almost all of these ethnic groups, the man is given more respect than the woman and this affects the society.
Nevertheless, it’s important to note that several steps have been taken to solve such problems some of them include article 64 of the Cameroon constitution signed 2nd June 1976 revised by law No 96/06 on 18 January which incorporates some of the provisions of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as well as the African Charter of Human and Peoples Rights, the Preamble states that “the nation shall protect women, the young, the elderly and the disabled”. According to article 65, the Preamble has legal grounds.
The constitution also has some provisions enshrining gender equality. It’s important to note that Cameroons population was about 23 million in 2015 and traditionally; women’s life is mostly in the domestic sphere and is not present much in the public sphere.
From data collected in 2011, 25% of women in Cameroon headed households in the country. Women marry early: about 50% of them get married for the first time at the age of 17 or 18 and bearing children is seen as the most important role of a woman leading to the high fertility rate in the country.
Also, women constitute 52% of Cameroon’s population and are actively involved in the fight against poverty making a crucial contribution to societal development. Nevertheless, this status of women which was often dwarfed and subordinated to that of men by culture and state institutions is gradually being reversed by the African Union’s (AU’s) institutional and legal framework on gender equality and the economic empowerment of women.
STATEMENT OF THE RESEARCH PROBLEM
First, we have the general problem of unequal pay between the men and women for the same job making life miserable for a number of women who face such problems.
Also, there is the problem of job discrimination that is what type of positions women should hold in society and the several conditions disfavoring a woman to get employed in our society.
To add, women face the problem of education all around the world and mostly in Africa as most families still have the idea that women are for the house while men go out and do all the other jobs.
And finally, another area of inequality is in the political sector where we have very few women who control political offices.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE RESEARCH
I.1.3.1 General objective
This research is aimed at examining the protection of women’s right to employment in Cameroon.
II.1.3.2 Specific objective
- To examine the laws and legal bodies supporting gender equality and their mission statements
- To examine the effectiveness of such laws and their impact on the world and African countries specifically Cameroon
- To propose and support other ideas supporting gender equality
- What policy recommendations can be made to address this problem?