One in four women worldwide cannot make their own decisions about their access to health care, according to a study by United Nations (UN) among 57 countries on Wednesday. A quarter of women also dare not say no to sex with their partner.
One in ten women cannot decide for themselves how to use contraception. Only slightly more than half of women (55 percent) make their own decisions about contraception, health care or sex.
In more than 40 percent of the countries surveyed, the position of women around making these decisions does not improve. The position of women is even deteriorating in some countries, the study found. In Benin, for example, in 2006, 41 percent of women made their own decisions about health care, among other things. In 2018 this was only 36 percent.
The researchers say that the educational level and the age at which a woman marries influence her self-determination, among other things.
The study found that three-quarters of the countries surveyed have laws that are supposed to protect women’s rights. In other countries, these rights are limited, for example by culture or religion.
Improving equality between men and women and improving the position of women is an important goal of the UN by 2030. According to the UN, self-determination among women is an important condition for achieving this.