Gender Equity at Global Forum in Recife

This post also appears on the LMGforHealth Blog

Women at 3GFHRH Recife

Lola Dare, Gaylor Hoskins, Gwen Ramokgopa, Ghida Fakhry, and Tim Evans, at the close of 3GFHRH

The 3rd Global Forum on Human Resources for Health ended today with the presentation of its outcome document, the Recife Political Declaration on HRH and with questions on how better represent women in senior management roles. Within it, Article Two states that “The enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health is one of the fundamental rights of every human being, without distinction of race, religion, political belief or economic or social condition”. Gender is not mentioned here but Article Six mentions that gender imbalances remain a major matter of concern.

For example in Uganda, top leadership and management positions for eight districts and four national facilities remain quite unequal. The table below indicates the discrepancy:

Position and salary scale Number of employees Male Female
Senior management level 133 77% 23%
Middle management level 326 63% 37%
Graduate and diploma entry level 2,406 39% 61%
Lower level 3,585 43% 57%
Total 6,450 43% 57%

(source: Capacity+/IntraHealth)

Article 14(v) of the declaration recognizes the need to “promote equal opportunities in education, development, management and career advancement for all health workers, with no form of discrimination based on gender, race, ethnicity or any other basis”.

As the numbers in Uganda show, much remains to be done, but many women leaders have shown their strong leadership and have made their voices heard during the forum. As the forum closes we have witnessed the need for more fundamental shifts in how women are represented. They are and will continue being at the forefront of the advocacy and action for the reduction of inequalities.