How to Increase Gender Equality in Miami
Author: Chloe Aldrich
In all aspects of life, diversity is essential. Every soccer team needs its offense, defense, midfielders, and goalies. Similarly, every company needs a wide variety of employees with a vast array of skills such as marketing, sales, production, and advertising. Our differences enable us to collaborate well together as a team, as it is an avenue for us to learn from one another and grow. However, diversity has led to so much prejudice and hatred in our society, as we tend to want others to be exactly like us. An example of such discrimination is the gender binary that exists in our world. So how can we help with this issue locally? Here are some ways to increase gender equality in Miami:
Freedom From Violence
According to The Women’s Fund, approximately 24 women per minute are victims of sexual assault at the hands of their intimate partners. One in three women experience physical or sexual assault during their lifetime, and one in three girls experience childhood sexual abuse. Gender-based violence such as human trafficking, domestic violence, and child abuse threatens the health, safety, and opportunities of those affected. Thus, it is crucial that Miami advocates for systemic change that addresses issues of violence for women and girls. Human trafficking, modern-day slavery involving the use of force or coercion to obtain some type of labor or commercial sex act, must be eliminated. Domestic violence, which occurs when a partner in any type of relationship uses abusive behavior to gain or maintain power over another intimate partner or family member, must also come to an end. Furthermore, child abuse, any type of cruelty inflicted upon a child (e.g. mental abuse, physical harm, neglect, sexual abuse, or exploitation) should cease to take place in Miami.
While Miami ranks third in the nation for the number of women-owned firms, we lack the resources necessary for substantial growth. Over 1.1 million women are eligible to vote in Miami, but less than 300,000 voted in the last presidential election. Thus, Miami needs to support programs and policies that help its women and girls recognize their full potential and flourish in leadership positions. For example, promoting high-quality workforce training can help terminate occupational segregation, which is one cause of the wage gap between male and female employees. Additionally, diversity programs that promote the inclusion of females in leadership roles, such as job opportunities and leadership development programs, can create better outcomes for women.
Health & Well-being
According to The Status of Women In The States, Florida is #32 in the country for health and well-being. Women are at higher risk for specific health conditions, such as depression and intimate partner violence, and generally have higher health care costs than men. Low-income women and women of color, in particular, are subject to poor health outcomes. Thus, affordable, good-quality health care must be accessible to all women in Miami. This includes the elimination of substance abuse through medical treatment, rehabilitation facilities, and programs for those grappling with addiction. Additionally, quality mental health care should be made available and affordable for all women and girls in Miami so that they can cope with the stresses of everyday life, participate in work or school productivity, and contribute to their communities.
The economic security of women and girls is critical, as it is often the underlying problem that creates or magnifies other issues. This includes achieving gender pay equity, which includes equal opportunity in education, training, hiring, advancement, and total workplace inclusion. Additionally, accessible childcare is vital for all families while parents are at work or for another reason (such as going to school to further their education). Affordable transportation should also be available to all Miami residents, as it will provide them with easier access to good schools and healthcare services. Furthermore, homelessness must be eradicated.
A Call For Justice
All people, regardless of gender, are of equal value. Men and women, rich and poor, old and young – all have much to offer our world individually. However, we must give all people a fair opportunity to fully harness their skills and talents so they can truly thrive in our society. To achieve true justice and righteousness, we must begin with seeing everyone as equal in all aspects of life.