The results show that COVID has had a significant and negative impact on women

Survey confirms COVID impacted women disproportionately

Survey confirms COVID impacted women disproportionately

77% of respondents in the EU believe it led to an increase in gender violence

For International Women’s Day on 8 March, the European Parliament commissioned a Eurobarometer survey to understand how the COVID crisis impacted women in the EU. The results (which it published on 4 March) reveal that the pandemic has had a significant and negative impact on girls and women.

Increasing violence against women

According to the report, 77% of women believe that the outbreak of COVID led to a rise in physical and emotional gender violence. What is worse, the findings reveal that in all EU countries, except Finland and Hungary, over 50% of women feel this way. More specifically, the results range from 93% in Greece to 47% in Hungary.

When asked how gender violence can be reduced, the respondents pointed to the following measures:

  • Making it easier to report violence against women, including to the police (58%)
  • Increasing the options for women to seek help (40%)
  • Increasing awareness and training of police and judiciary on the subject (40%)
  • Increasing women’s financial independence (38%)

Negative effects on work and income

38% of the surveyed women disclosed that the pandemic has had a negative effect on their financial stability and personal income. Taking a closer look at this finding, Eurobarometer revealed that the results range from 60% in Greece to 19% in Denmark.

44% also revealed that the pandemic has led to a negative work-life balance, with 21% of women sharing that they are considering or have already decided to reduce the amount of time they allocate to paid work.

Deteriorating mental health

It is not surprising that the outbreak of the pandemic has had a negative impact on women’s mental health, as people all over the world have grown anxious and stressed over the past two years. Revealing how women have felt, the report shows that they have been most likely to feel worried about friends and family (44%), feel anxious and stressed (37%), and feel concerned about their future (33%).

Aside from the above, the Eurobarometer survey further sheds light on the fact that specific societal categories have been more severely impacted than others. That is to say, about half of the respondents who have children under the age of 15 have stated that school and childcare closures have had a major impact on their mental health.

“The results of the Eurobarometer survey confirm what we already know: the COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected women and girls in myriads of ways,” commented Chair of Women’s Rights and Gender Equality Committee Robert Biedroń.

Read the full report here.



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