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Articles and ViewsGENDER DISCRIMINATION IN SUDANESE LABOUR MARKET by Dr Abbas Abdelkarim
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GENDER DISCRIMINATION IN SUDANESE LABOUR MARKET by Dr Abbas Abdelkarim

07-29-2021, 04:19 PM
عباس عبد الكريم
<aعباس عبد الكريم
Registered: 09-27-2020
Total Posts: 20





GENDER DISCRIMINATION IN SUDANESE LABOUR MARKET by Dr Abbas Abdelkarim

    04:19 PM July, 29 2021

    Sudanese Online
    عباس عبد الكريم-السودان
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    No Labour market is undifferentiated. Labour markets worldwide show some distinct segments. Understanding what these segments are, their features, changes that may occur to them and the dynamics that produce and reproduce them are important for labour market and employment policy analysis and formulation.
    Based on the analysis of the data in Sudan, four main forms of segmentation are identified: gender, age group (youth versus adults), location (rural versus urban) and formality (formal versus informal sector). As much as data allow, manifestation of outcomes of gender-based segmentation examined in this post are: employment opportunities, types of jobs, and work reward (wages/income).
    The data used come from the latest Sudan Labour Force Survey (SLFS) jointly published in 2013 by the Ministry of Human Resources and Labour and the International Labour Organisation (referred to below as SLFS, 2013)). No more recent data is available, however, the general trends in the labour market are expected to have remained the same if not have worsened.
    (Un)Employment
    To begin with, female labour force participation rate (LFPR) was 28.9% at the end of 2011 (when the Survey was conducted), while it was 70.8% for males.
    LFPR is proportion of the total number of the employed and the unemployed actively looking for a job of a certain category (e.g. women, the whole nation, etc) to the total number of the labour force (which is the working age population) in that category. Working age is defined by the ILO as 15-65, in the Survey, surprisingly, Sudan has defined it as 10-65).
    Socially imposed factors are largely what reduce women’s LFPR.
    A high illiteracy rate characterises the labour force (overall 34.7%; 45.7% of all females; 45.9% of all rural people - where nearly two-thirds of the labour force reside), leading to low employability and low human development situations.
    The Survey recorded an overall unemployment rate of 18.5% with wide disparities in its distribution: 37.0% of all women (against 11.4% of all men) , 43.7% of all urban women (against 14.9% of all urban men), 33.8% of all young people, 49.5% of all urban young people, 57.9% of all female young people (against 22.2% of all male youth).
    It is important to note that unemployment rates depicted above represent  significant underestimation. The SLFS (2013) has not catered for underemployment (working for less hours than is desirable). Anyone who had worked for 1 hour or more in the week preceding the interview, has been considered as employed. In Sudan, casual workers make a high proportion of the labour force. In such situation, those who are considered as employed when they have been so for only a small segment of their labour time could be very large. This misinforms policy. In my estimate, the unemployment rate, if we add those who worked for less than half the hours they were willing to devote, would be more than double the declared rate of 18.5%.

    Unemployment among higher (tertiary) educated people was at 23.3% (70.7% of whom were urban, and 74.4% of whom were female).
    This situation suggests inadequate availability of jobs for this category and/or mismatch between higher education graduates and labour market needs (and the latter seems more probable).
    Female urban youth segment was the most vulnerable urban labour market segment, with unemployment rate of 74.1% (three in every four cannot find work).

    This stands in contrast with the fact that urban women was the labour force category with the highest proportion of tertiary graduates: 1 in every 3 ; whereas for urban men it was 1 in every 8.

    Types of Jobs

    Employed persons (15 years and over) by Major Occupation, Area and Sex (%), 2011


    Source: SLFS, 2013, Table 4.4b
    M=Males, F= Females, MF= Males and Females- Total.
    Source: SLFS, 2013, Table 4.4b
    Two major relevant observations can be drawn from the Table.
    19.6% of all employed women were in the four major occupations requiring higher level education and skills, whereas the corresponding percent for men was 10.8%.

    While 4.8% of men were employed in the professional occupation category, 0.7% were managers. This gave a ratio of 15:100 (managers to professionals). In contrast, 13.2% of women were employed in the professional category while only 0.3% were managers. This makes the corresponding ratio of managers to professionals for women as 2:100.
    The above shows that that woman had fewer opportunities for promotion allowing them to occupy managerial jobs. This contradicts their relatively more representation in the professional occupations, which are the second highest level in the occupational hierarchy after managers.
    Wages
    Despite the fact that in the rural areas the majority of jobs require only basic skills, and in the urban areas women were better educated and more represented in the jobs that require higher skills, women received less wages than men. In the rural areas the average wage of men as a percentage of average wage of women was 188%, and in the urban areas it was 190%.

    More than half of all employed women (54.4%) worked in Agriculture. About half of them (45.5%) were unpaid workers, making them the most vulnerable/exploited employment group.
    Endnote
    No form of discrimination can be ended without continuous and solid struggle. Sudanese women movement has long history behind it of struggle in various fronts. The post- December 2018 revolution’s social and political atmosphere is favourable to women organising against all kinds of discrimination.
    This post’s aim is to provide information that may help in the struggle to having equal opportunities in the labour market.

    Abbas Abdelkarim Ahmed- Dubai
    [email protected]
    homepage: https://https://www.abbasconsult.comwww.abbasconsult.com






                  

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