Understanding Socio-Economic Concerns For Women (The Problems And Way Forward)

Deepanwita Dey Society 24 November 2023 5 Mins Read
socio economic

With almost a quarter of the 21st century spent, it’s unfortunate that we still have to maintain socio economic groups based on gender. Talking about socio-economic problems for women, these can be as common as pay and workplace discrimination. These problems also include violence and gender power relations.

Here’s an attempt to delve deeper into the issue and find sincere solutions backed by data and reports. From a woman to a woman and everyone!

Let the discussion begin! However, before that, let’s have a brief idea about what socio economic is.

Understanding Socio-Economic?

Do you know what is socio-economic? Socio-economic or social economy refers to a branch of social science. It also is related to a branch of economics. Together, they figure out how economics impacts how we live and how well we live.

Further, this social science assesses how the processes in society are linked with economic activities. In addition, this study helps to understand the behavior and practices of a socio-economic class and how they act as consumers.

Keeping the standard definition aside, what intrigues me the most is the socio-economic levels of requirements or needs for us.

In this context, Maslow’s “hierarchy of needs” is an authoritative account. Presented in the form of a pyramid, the model tells us what needs to motivate us to act in a certain way.

Understanding Socio-Economic

Also, at the bottom of the pyramid, there are basic needs you need to fulfill. As human beings, we only look at the upper levels when our needs in the lower levels are met.

From the bottom to the top, the needs go like this:

  • Physiological needs (water, food, sleep, clothes, shelter, warmth)
  • Safety needs (safe environment for living, good physical health, stable income, protection from crime)
  • Emotional needs (being loved, having friends, emotional intimacy, acceptance by near ones)
  • Esteem needs (dignity, understanding self-worth, competency, and most importantly, independence)
  • Self-actualization (strong morals, understanding and accepting reality, autonomy, consistency, etc.)

At every stage, there is more than one factor or need that women struggle to fulfill even today. 

What Are The Socioeconomic Factors Putting Women In Trouble?

There is no denying the fact that women struggle with socio-economic development in different spheres, and there are many apparent and hidden issues to impact their growth. 

Lack Of Pay Parity: A Major Socio-Economic Issue For Women 

Lack Of Pay Parity A Major Socio-Economic Issue For Women

The Global Gender Gap Report” of 2018 says,

Despite positive trends overall and in most of the underlying factors, the economic opportunity gender gap remains the dimension that will require the longest time to close completely. Based on today’s status and the trend observed over the past twelve years, it will now take 202 years to close the gap.

So, a lack of pay parity and access to economic resources is going to remain a major challenge for women in years to come. However, there is a silver lining, with the Global Gender Gap Report of 2023 showcasing a 0.3% improvement from last year’s report. The report says,

The Global Gender Gap score in 2023 for all 146 countries included in this edition stands at 68.4% closed. Considering the constant sample of 145 countries covered in the 2022 and 2023 editions, the overall score changed from 68.1% to 68.4%, an improvement of 0.3 percentage points compared to last year’s edition…

The report further highlights.

Compared to last year, progress towards narrowing the gender gap has been more widespread: 42 of the 145 economies covered in both the 2022 and 2023 editions improved their gender parity score by at least 1 percentage point since the previous edition and 40 other countries registered gains of less than 1 percentage point.

What Is The Way Forward?

What Is The Way Forward

As we are still fighting with gender inequality, money, and power remain things of taboo for women. But we need to own these terms. Achieving financial freedom will help us make progress toward achieving pay parity and help us meet our physiological needs, as defined by Maslow’s pyramid.

It would be foolish of you to think that corporations and government policies will make the changes overnight. Suppose you are in a power position in a business. You have to think of means so that women have to take fewer career breaks or get equal remuneration based on the designation and pay structure of an organization.

These are the small ways where you can really voice your thoughts on socio-economic factors and take action. 

Did You Know?

Pay equality for women can add over $ 4.3 trillion to the GDP of the USA by 2025. (Source)

The Threat Of Violence

The Threat Of Violence

While stable and equal pay can help you secure some of the physiological and safety needs, there is another concern lurking large as a socio-economic problem for women. It’s the threat of violence of to “socio-economic deprivation.” 

It is the practice of making women more vulnerable economically. To explain further, there are many instances when women are forced to quit their jobs and remain as caregivers at home. This is robbing them of their financial independence. This is, again, a deprivation of their security needs.

In many cases where domestic violence is at play, a woman is mentally or physically abused so that they are no longer able to earn a living for themselves. This is, in a way stopping a person from fulfilling their security and self-esteem needs. 

So, what’s the solution? Given perils like unequal pay and lack of childcare policies are already there, society exerts enormous pressure on women so that they remain economically dependent on their partners. There is a fear of leaving an abusive or non-supportive partner just because they cannot fulfill physiological and safety needs.

It’s like compromising the emotional and esteem needs to get the basic requirements fulfilled.

What Is The Way Forward?

Well, this may sound hackneyed. But you need to push forward. Be financially independent, considering it as a necessity and not an option. If you can provide for yourself, it will be difficult for anyone to control or manipulate you.

Also, identify the problems fast and first. You have to speak up for any force trying to stunt your socio-economic growth or robbing you of your needs. 

In addition, change your thoughts about masculinity and how the society works. If it’s wrong, it’s wrong for everyone! So, shed your inhibitions. 

I know that things are not easy, with a 2021 report showing only 49% of the countries achieving gender parity in elementary education. Numbers are even less as we move up the ladder in terms of gender equality in access to education.

Still, there is no denying that, as women, we often don’t consider the importance of being financially independent or being vocal against the threat of violence exerted by family or society. It’s time to change that! 

Final Words 

So, the socio-economic challenges for women are not going to evaporate overnight. We all talk about the beacon of change, but the problem is that we refuse to be one. Lack of opportunities and resources is still a major problem but not the only problem, honestly. It’s our closed mindset that stops us from being the change we need to be.

So, like always, girls, we have to work hard, get access to education, learn skills, and be financially independent. It all begins with providing for yourself. Wish you all glory and success! 

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