On Thursday 29 July, the Women Parliamentarian Network met online to discuss how to ensure the inclusion of women in the post-Covid economic recovery. Participants from Iraq, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Turkey, the US, and Morocco discussed ways in which women have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic and shared solutions and best practice for addressing the unique challenges that they have faced.
The pandemic has had a disproportionately negative impact on women, however, participants noted that some positive changes have also occurred. The new ability to work flexibly has helped some women to balance childcare with working, and has proven that it is possible to work effectively from home. Participants discussed the importance of revisiting labour laws in order to protect the rights of those who benefit from working flexibly.
The group also discussed the difficulties that women faced in acquiring financial aid during the pandemic, often a result of policies formed without the specific needs of women in mind. Participants agreed that connectivity is central to empowering women, while data collection is necessary to achieve reform. The importance of including women at the highest levels of decision-making was emphasised as essential for addressing the fiscal aftermath of the pandemic.