In the context of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, women are risking to pay a higher price for the crisis than men. This can be in the form of a massive physical and mental workload during the crisis, that can lead to career disruptions both in the short and the long run, and in extreme cases even of physical sufferings. The present report is a first attempt to assess the potential consequences of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak on women and on gender equality in Europe. The report was produced with the aim of informing policy-making about the possible impacts of the crisis.
The report concludes with a set of policy recommendations that can help to mitigate the damages and realising the potential benefits that the COVID-19 outbreak has brought about the equality between men and women in Europe:
- Constant awareness of the particular circumstances of women and gendered policy responses in all the policy areas is needed. Awareness goes hand in hand with information, and it is also firmly connected with reliable data.
- A better representation of women in decision making will facilitate and speed up this process along with more consistent involvement of gender experts.
- The role of women’s shelters should be reinforced as it is a valid means of reaching out to women in the territory and making citizens more aware of gender-based violence.
- Sensitising employers to gender differences and making them aware of the amount of burden male and female employees handle during the crisis could make them more supportive of their female colleagues.