Global perspective Human stories

UN Gender Focus: Syrian women, workplace sexual abuse and agricultural workers

UN Gender Focus: Syrian women, workplace sexual abuse and agricultural workers


“Invisible” impact of Syrian civil war destroying family life: UNFPA

The dignity and hopes of Syrian women and girls are disintegrating after six years of brutal civil war, along with the whole fabric of family life. That’s according to Henia Dakkak, technical adviser with the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), who has worked with refugees and internally-displaced Syrian women across the Middle East. She spoke at an event entitled The Invisible Lives of Syrian Women, during the Commission on the Status of Women which wraps up at UN Headquarters this week. Matthew Wells asked her to outline the hidden impact of war on the women of Syria, and what the UN can do to help repair the damage.

“Preventing sexual harassment means to empower women at the workplace,” says Srey Sros, a garment factory worker in Cambodia. Photo: UN Women Cambodia/Charles Fox

Women are “much more vulnerable” to workplace sexual abuse: ILO

Women whose jobs are insecure or “precarious” face a higher rate of sexual abuse in the workplace, the International Labour Organization (ILO) has said. Manuela Tomei is the Director of the ILO’s Conditions of Work and Equality Department. She took part in a panel discussion about violence in the workplace held during the latest session of the Commission on the Status of Women. Lucy Dean asked Ms Tomei about the link between ingrained misogynistic attitudes and workplace violence.

Women farmers plow their fields in preparation to plant corn in Gnoungouya Village, Guinea. Photo: World Bank/Dominic Chavez

Support for African women agricultural workers a “smart shortcut”

The women who feed the African continent are “thirsty for change” and “aspiring for a better future,” according to a senior gender officer with the UN Food and Agriculture Programme (FAO). Tacko Ndiaye says her agency is helping to empower Africa’s women agricultural workers, for example by providing them with labour-saving technologies, climate-smart farming techniques, and the tools to get their goods to market. Ms Ndiaye is based at FAO’s regional office in Ghana.  She also was in New York for the latest session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women. She told Dianne Penn why enforcing gender equality and women’s empowerment is a “smart shortcut” for sustainable development in Africa.

Presenter: Dianne Penn

Production Assistant: Lucy Dean

Duration: 10'00″

Photo Credit
UN News/Matthew Wells