Thursday, 17.05.18

Women’s affairs 2018 – Expectations regarding women and women’s expectations in Hungary

It often seems as if in Hungary the reality experienced by women hardly coincides with the public discourse on the situation of women in society. Although media keeps covering scandals related to sexual harassment and domestic violence and numerous indexes and statistics are published about serious and unjust inequalities between women and men, the society is largely uninterested in these issues. The problem of gender equality revokes either the memories of the strained and lopsided egalitarian policies of state socialism or is considered to be a Western-influenced issue, a kind of „upper-class hobby” having nothing to do with daily struggles of women.

What do women in Hungary really want? What problems do they face? What does society expect from women and what do women expect from men, politics and society?

To answer such and similar questions, the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung presented the findings of the study titled "Women 2018" on 17 May 2018, which were discussed in the presence of some of the female representatives of parliamentary opposition parties.

The authors of the study, Eszter Kováts and Anikó Gregor found that economic uncertainty poses the greatest challenge for Hungarian women. The most pressing problems are wage inequality and uncertainty in workplaces. Caring for family members is a structural problem that affects especially middle-aged women. While issues related to child rearing are widely discussed, society often forgets about the concerns of women caring for their sick and elderly relatives. This representative study has therefore given great impetus to launching a dialogue on the social importance of nursing activities and contains targeted action recommendations. In addition to investing in social infrastructure, working conditions must be improved also. Among other things, cooperation with trade unions and other non-governmental organizations are particularly important when demands for flexible working hours and the extension of the home office's work were presented.


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