On 24 October 1975, Icelandic women did not go to their paid jobs nor did they do any housework or child-rearing at home.
It was decided that the women of Iceland would go on strike for one day in order to remind the people of Iceland how important women were to Icelandic society, and to bring attention to the low pay of women . This was the first time a women’s strike of nearly all the women of the country was used in https://b2b.partcommunity.com/community/groups/topic/view/group_id/831/topic_id/15421/post_id/40839 Iceland . Grassroots activism at such a scale unsurprisingly had a significant material impact. Within five years, the country had the world’s first democratically elected female president – Vigdis Finnbogadottir. Now in her 80s, this steely-eyed powerhouse tells me of the impact that day of protest had on her own career trajectory. Iceland has received media attention for its work towards equality in the workplace, especially for its efforts to close the gender wage gap, but Iceland continues to have an unadjusted gender pay gap of 14% between men and women. Toward the beginning of the boom years, the herring girls had capitalized on their sudden and dramatic economic power.
- NPR’s Leila Fadel speaks with Eliza Reed, the first lady of Iceland, about her new book and why her country is a great place to be a woman.
- There were no shifts or pre-scheduled hours.” As vessels approached, local boys ran or biked from house to house, knocking on windows to wake the women up.
- These extraordinary women have shaped the history and culture of Iceland and have certainly inspired others.
- Ásta told me that one of the advantages she brings to the queer women’s history project is that she has a huge network of women that she can talk to about recent history.
- Today we celebrate women worldwide and the tremendous—and hard-fought—impacts they have made in society, business, science, sports, arts, and politics.
Iceland’s record on all of these fronts is better than most countries; in the UK, women’s hourly pay is 18% less than men. Iceland celebrates its national women’s day or wife’s day, konnuirdagin, in February. The day, which is centuries old, is marked by men taking the time to celebrate and dote on the women in their life. Katrín Jakobsdóttir, a member of the left-leaning Left-Green Movement, became Iceland’s second female prime minister. One of her actions as prime minister was to organise a new law which requires Icelandic companies to demonstrate that they pay men and women equally. She became a member of the Althing aged 31, the Minister of Education, Science and Culture at 33, and the leader of the Left-Green Movement at 37. Iceland became the third modern democratic country in which women gained the vote in 1915.
The law draws out a roadmap to achieving gender equality, even including language on changing negative gender stereotypes. Within the law are 35 articles outlining specific policies on everything from outlawing gender discrimination in schoolbooks and the workplace to buying goods and services. The Act on Equal Status and Equal Rights of Women and Men is the reason gender equality is a hallmark of Icelandic culture. The law, established in 2000, was revamped in 2008 with the overarching goal of reaching equal rights through all paradigms of society. This law includes information on gender equality for government and businesses to follow. Women were not to attend work if they had paid jobs, nor do any of the housework or child-care they normally did. The women’s organizations spread word of the “day off” quickly through the small country of 220,000 people.
Iceland’s largest maritime museum, it occupies five former fishery buildings, including a salting station that also served as a women’s dormitory, a fish meal and oil factory, and a reconstructed boathouse. Overall, the Nordic country has a near perfect score on the gender-equality scale. For eight years, the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Report ranked Iceland No. 1 on its list of countries actively closing gaps in gender equality.
The Role of Women in Research
And, you know, this is also an ongoing issue that we need to be tackling and need to be dealing with. But hopefully, we’re moving forward with that a little bit more. So it’ll be really interesting to follow what happens in that case. Iceland’s first women’s organization was founded in the countryside in 1869. It’s focus was to foster more unity and cooperation among women in the region. They also collected money to buy a knitting machine that all members could use. You might have heard of some of the women I’m featuring but there are others that you have probably never learned about.
The official law, created in 2000, is known as the Icelandic Act on Maternity/Paternity and Parental Leave. The law itself was amended in 2006 increasing parental leave from six to nine months. The government covers parental leave for birth, adoption, and foster care for all employees in Iceland, even those who are self-employed paying 80% of earned salary to new parents. Parents split the time of leave equally to ensure children grow up with equal care from both parents, and workplaces are balanced. Within the law there are nine defined areas of gender discrimination. It identifies differences between indirect and direct gender discrimination, acknowledges gaps in wages, and recognizes that gender-based violence is detrimental to society. Here are seven laws and standard practices that support women’s rights, and penalize gender discrimination.
Parliament is expected to pass the bill becoming the first country to make gender wage discrimination https://www.womendailymagazine.com/7-things-to-know-while-dating-latin-women/ illegal. After passing, the government expects the law to roll into effect by 2020 in an effort to close the gender wage gap. The striking women achieved their goal of demonstrating the importance of their work, at all levels from home to workplace, to the well being of the country. While this was their main goal, and it even led to the passage of an equal rights bill, this bill did little to change the wage disparity and employment opportunities for women in the short run. That changed in 1903 but still that means that more than 50 years went by where only men with certain status in society had the right to vote.
“It was a great personal reminder to talk about myself respectfully, especially around my own daughter.”
The strike lasted until midnight that night, when the typesetters returned to work on papers for the next day. These papers contained nothing besides articles on the women’s strike.
Thanks to mandatory quotas, almost half of board members of listed companies are now women, while 65% of Iceland’s university students and 41% of MPs are female. Because the pay is significant – 80% of salary up to a ceiling of £2,300 a month – and because it’s on a use-it-or-lose-it basis, 90% of Icelandic fathers take up their paternal leave. This piece of social engineering has had a profound impact on men as well as women. Not only do women return to work after giving birth faster than before, they return to their pre-childbirth working hours faster, too.