Stakeholders in the Upper East Region have urged the government to as a matter of urgency adopt, ratify and implement the International Labour Organisation (ILO) convention and the recommendation on the gender-based violence.
According to the stakeholders, this would not only help promote women access to standardised and decent work but would also help fast-track the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The stakeholders made the call on Tuesday, in Bolgatanga, during the regional launch of the global campaign for decent work for women in the informal sector under the theme, ‘Decent work now for women in the informal economy.’
It was organised by the Action Aid Ghana and brought together various women groups in the region, representatives from the Department of Gender, Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU), Widows and Orphans Movement (WOM) among others.
The ILO, is a United Nations agency whose mandate is to advance social justice and promote decent work by setting international labour standards, advocates adoption of its principle by member countries to promote opportunities for men and women to obtain decent and productive work, in conditions of freedom, equity, security and dignity.
The Upper East Regional Programmes Manager of AAG, Mr Sulemana Alhassan,who explained that it was the right of every individual including women to enjoy decent working conditions and have equal access to pay regretted that the global economy and socio-cultural practices had prevented many women from fully enjoying these rights especially in developing economies.
“Women everywhere in the world, including Ghana, are overworked, underpaid, unheard and under-represented. As if these were not enough, women are further harassed and abused,” he lamented.
Mr Alhassan disclosed that statistics from the ILO indicated that 35 per cent of women globally over the age of 15 have experienced sexual or physical violence at homes, communities and at workplaces , said globally over 2.7 billion women also are legally restricted from having the same choice of jobs as men.
He explained that it was against this background that the global campaign was instituted aimed at seeking to increase awareness and solicit support for the need to ensure decent work for all women in the informal economy in a manner that pushes government to adopt, ratify and implement the ILO convention and the recommendation on gender-based violence in the workplace.
A representative from the Regional Directorate of the Department of Gender, Ms Portia Loggah, noted that there could not be any holistic development when issues confronting women were not addressed and their participation recognised.
The Upper East Regional Minister, Ms Paulina Patience Abayage, whose speech was read for her, explained that the theme was in the right direction as the country was making efforts to achieve the SDGs particularly goal eight.
The Regional Minister stated that over the years the country has made strides in a bid to fight violence against women including the setting up of the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, the gender policy of 2015, the enactment of the Domestic Violence Act of 2007, Act 732 and the establishment of DOVVSU among others.
She, therefore, called on all stakeholders especially parents to make a paradigm shift from assigning gender roles to children and abolishing social norms and cultural beliefs that impeded the efforts to address challenges on gender equality.
The launch was preceded by a route march with the women displaying placards with the inscriptions, support ILO proposals on gender-based violence in the world work, provide maternity leave for women in the informal sector, and protect women workers, among others.
FROM SAMUEL AKAPULE, BOLGATANGA