[Answered] The New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern’s recent resignation highlights the challenges faced by women in politics. Discuss.

Introduction: Contextual introduction.

Body: Write some challenges faced by women in politics.

Conclusion: Write a way forward.

According to a report of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU, 2020), India ranks 143th globally in terms of representation of women in Parliament. Despite a woman Prime Minister, a President, and a relatively higher percentage of women parliamentarians when compared to some of the other mature democracies in the past, they are underrepresented in our political system in proportion to their numbers.

Challenges faced by women in politics:

  • Lack of Resources:Because of their low proportion in the inner political party structure of India, women fail to gather resources and support for nurturing their political constituencies. Women do not get adequate financial support from the political parties to contest the elections.
  • Political obstacles: Absence of party support, such as restricted financial assistance for female candidates, restricted access to political connections, and more stringent standards and credentials applied to women.
  • Political parties’ environmenttoo is not women-friendly. They have to struggle hard and face multi-dimensional issues to create space for them in the party. Some of the MeToo allegations are examples of such environment.
  • The choices for women are often seen in binary terms, between their personal lives and professional aspirations.
  • Despite several pieces of legislation, women-friendly reforms, such as maternity leave, continue to be viewed by enterprises as a hindrance or financial burden.
  • Women candidates receive fewer tickets from political parties because it is still largely believed in the political community that they have a lower chance of winning elections than men do.
  • When women secure high political office, it is often considered the result of a pathway laid by fathers, husbands or other male figures in the family.

Women’s engagement in politics is critical for successful governance. Guidance and training programs help women prepare for political positions and improve their political abilities. It is also suggested that political party members get gender awareness training, as well as leadership training for future female leaders.

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