A stirring short video just released by the NGO CARE seems to show life as a woman in some kind of dystopian parallel universe.
With an eerie, suspenseful soundtrack, the video shows the woman waiting for a man to pick her up and escort her around as she runs errands and a salesperson who hesitates to accept her payment until he can confirm her purchase with the man accompanying her.
But for many women around the world, these scenes are not fiction, they’re fact.
The video’s opening narration makes “one simple request: that all laws should be equal for men and women.”
Yet, millions of women and girls worldwide do not have the same opportunities in life because laws unjustly discriminate against them. According to United Nations Women, approximately 90% of countries still have at least one law that discriminates against women.
Like the woman in the video, women in Saudi Arabia cannot open a bank account without a man’s permission. In 18 different countries, a man can prevent his wife from taking a job if he does not approve. Globally, women own less than 20% of the world’s land because women in many places still do not have the right to own land, or are prevented from exercising this right because of other laws that discriminate against women and privilege men.
That’s why Global Citizen campaigns to #LeveltheLaw — to eliminate all forms of gender discrimination in legislation so that women around the world have equal access to education, healthcare, justice, and a bright future.
This means ending child marriage, closing legal loopholes that may give impunity to rapists or perpetrators of sexual assault, and strengthening laws that ensure all girls have access to quality healthcare and education.
From the US to Saudi Arabia to India, the world has a long way to go to close the gender gap, but removing gender discrimination from legal frameworks to #LeveltheLaw is a crucial step in achieving equality worldwide.