The Jordan Times
By Laila Azzeh
AMMAN — The Jordanian National Commission for Women (JNCW) on Wednesday celebrated International Women’s Day, which coincided this year with the silver jubilee of the commission.
On the occasion, a conference was held to discuss Jordanian women’s economic participation and challenges, which still hinder their engagement in the labour market.
“Today, at this remarkable stage in the progress of Jordanian women, we look back 25 years to the establishment of the Jordanian National Commission for Women, which has witnessed both success and struggle,” said HRH Princess Basma, the UN Women goodwill ambassador.
Citing achievements realised by the commission to improve the overall situation of women throughout the years, the princess noted that the JNCW, along with its partners from across different sectors, have “focused tirelessly on gender mainstreaming in government development programmes”.
“Efforts are being exerted on the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to achieve equality and empowerment for women and girls, and to ensure that the National Strategy for Women remains an integral part of the government’s plans,” added the princess, who chairs the JNCW.
With the conference titled “Women’s Economic Participation in the Changing World of Work”, Princess Basma highlighted that its theme reflected a difficult economic situation in Jordan and throughout the region.
In a country where unemployment among women stands at 24.5 per cent, one of the highest rates in the region, participants at the one-day conference discussed restrictions that hinder women from work.
During the event, the JNCW announced that 2018 will be a national year to empower women economically.
Commission Secretary General Salma Nims underlined the importance of joint efforts to empower women and increase their participation in all areas.
Ziad Sheikh, UN Women’s representative in Jordan, noted that huge numbers of Jordanian women work in the informal labour market, which means that they are often working without social security or legal protection and getting lower wages than their male counterparts.
“This also means that they are at greater risk of harassment and discrimination at the workplace,” he said.
The Kingdom is celebrating International Women’s Day, marked on March 8, with the slogan: “Women in the Changing World of Work: Planet 50-50 by 2030”.