If the decision-making and economic power of women in the world of work is slowly growing and evolving, acquiring more and more space and importance, it is at home that there is still a worrying gap in gender equity that undermines full independence in the female sphere. The decision-making power in the family, in many cases, is less than that gained at the level and to this is added the greater domestic workload that women undertake compared to their partners.
Workers and mothers, a double condition painstakingly acquired throughout history, which however today also penalizes the time to devote to one’s passions which is extremely thin. These are just some of the aspects that emerged thanks to the LEI (Work, Equity, Inclusion) survey conducted by the Libellula Foundation, to find out the state of satisfaction of women in the domestic environment, and which involved over 4,300 female workers, including white collar workers, blue collar workers, managers and freelancers professionals from all over Italy.
3 out of 4 women are not happy with the division of household chores
A truly variegated picture that returns a common state of dissatisfaction due to the imbalance in housewives and low power in financial choices: in fact, 3 out of 4 women (76%) are not happy with how the workload is divided with the partner and only one woman out of 10 (9.3%) is primarily responsible for the economic direction of the family. These and other data will find space in the “The truth cannot remain in the shadows” campaign launched on the occasion of Libellula Week, a week of online initiatives and meetings, from 21 to 25 November, where experts on diversity and inclusion, lawyers, sociologists and journalists will address the issues of discrimination in the workplace but will not only talk about language, digital violence and economic empowerment.
An awareness campaign that, starting from the data, wants to get men and women to reflect on these important issues, making the closeness to these problems more tangible in everyday life. “It is precisely in everyday life that we can see the signs of discrimination and violence. We just have to open our eyes and listen to those next to us in the workplace or in shared spaces, we have to learn to observe and listen to each other in our daily actions to overcome the gap and stereotypes that limit women even in the family”, she says Giuseppe Di Rienzo, General Manager of Fondazione Libellula, the Foundation that was born in 2020 from a social responsibility project of Zeta Service and which today boasts a network of around 80 virtuous companies (including Barilla, Furla, Esselunga, Montenegro, Randstad, Zurich ).
One in 2 takes care of the children exclusively
We must not forget that the same frustration also concerns the management of children, in fact one in 2 women claims to take care of them without any support from their partner. When mothers are not exclusively involved, other caring figures such as grandparents or babysitters are more frequent than the situation in which the partner mainly takes care of it personally. There are just 2% of cases in which the man takes care of the children exclusively, against the 8% represented by the other figures. But that’s not all: the women interviewed claim to use more than 80% of their time for work, travel and care, domestic and family activities. The result is a reduced space for other activities such as sports, cultural initiatives and volunteering, which limit the individual dimension, time for oneself and the impact on the community: “The results of the survey tell us that discrimination starts from the home, where women’s time is essentially time spent on others. It should make us think that many women hold positions of responsibility at work while at home their opinion on financial matters matters less.
As is happening in the professional world, it is necessary to create a shared culture to achieve full equality even at home, which allows women to dedicate time to themselves and be protagonists of the family’s economic life” analyzes Giuseppe Di Rienzo again. It is evident that in contemporary society women are called to have greater responsibilities for the functioning of the home and family, but does greater commitment also correspond to equal decision-making power? The women involved in the survey say no. In addition to the problem of job imbalance, the issue of low decision-making power for economic matters is also highlighted. Only in 9.3% of cases are women primarily responsible for the financial decisions of the family, taken in the vast majority by men. The economic management shared with the partner is in most cases focused on short-term ordinary management: a practice that risks making women find themselves unprepared at the time of retirement. Discrimination and inequality at home fuels that in the workplace, creating a vicious circle that stifles women’s desires and ambitions.
A real lack of culture and awareness on issues aimed at fully achieving gender equality. It is with this objective that the Libellula Foundation has created the Libellula Week, an initiative that Giuseppe di Rienzo describes as “necessary to accelerate change. The relationship between genders, inside and outside the organization, is still significantly affected by limiting cultural stereotypes and visions that daily impact on women’s experiences, on the way in which we speak to them and about them and in concrete terms on their time, money and careers. We believe that only with a constant and wide-ranging action on these factors will we be able to achieve fairness, respect and attention towards all people, men and women, in all contexts, professional and family. It is with this perspective that we will continue our awareness-raising activity”. (All rights reserved)