Women continue to suffer inequality in the workplace but introducing quotas may do more harm than good when it comes to proving that we are just as capable as men
Quotas for Women have been adopted by many countries in an effort to challenge gender inequality in the work place. The issue of gender inequality in the workplace urgently needs to be confronted. It is ridiculous that in the modern-day era, women are still discriminated against based on gender.
A study by Business Provider reveals that in the UK, more than a quarter of women have experienced some form of gender discrimination in the work place, including 26 per cent of women stating that having children held them back in their career and 19 per cent claiming that they had been denied a promotion after taking maternity leave.
Employers have always been reluctant to employ women, especially those of a childbearing age, even though they are equally qualified for the roles as much as any man.
Nonetheless, despite these obstacles, I disagree with the concept of quotas and believe that they are inconsistent with the definition of feminism. They serve more as an example of reverse discrimination and are an impractical solution to remedying inequality of the sexes in the workplace. In fact, I believe that their introduction will do more harm than good to the position of women in the workforce.
Feminism is defined in the Oxford Dictionary as: ‘The advocacy of women’s rights on the ground of the equality of the sexes’. Arguably, quotas contradict this definition of feminism. They might put women at an advantage when it comes to actually getting an executive position, but this will not be on the basis of equality. Equality should involve men and women being equally considered for a position, rather than employing a woman merely on the basis of her female status. A ‘true’ feminist would consider the concept of quotas to be degrading, insulting and patronising to women.
The quota is also an example of reverse discrimination since its intention is to end the discrimination of women in the workplace by discriminating against men instead. Employment should be based on merit and talent rather than gender. It is hypocritical to protest about discrimination against women and then prohibit men from being employed.
Furthermore, quotas actually do more to discriminate against women than not by weakening the position of women in the workplace. They allow people to form preconceived thoughts that females are employed only because of the existence of a quota and not because they have earned their position.
A quota is an impractical solution and does not effectively deal with the root cause of the problem. It will do little to actually stop discrimination against women in the workplace, but rather, merely improve statistics—something which is unlikely to make a real difference.
Women’s skills must be recognised without the introduction of a quota. Efforts need to be placed in proving that women are capable of succeeding without the aid of a quota for true equality to exist.