The Maputo Protocol guarantees comprehensive rights to women, including the right to take part in the political process, to social and political equality with men, to control their reproductive health , and an end to female genital mutilation. Their goals also include giving women who work certain full-time jobs equal pay to the men with the same job. The notion of gender equality, and of its degree of achievement in a certain country, is very complex because there are countries that have a history of a high level of gender equality in certain areas of life but not in other areas.
A large and growing body of research has shown how gender inequality undermines health and development. This view may be in opposition to the views and goals of gender equality. Violence against women Violence against women is a technical term used to collectively refer to violent acts that are primarily or exclusively committed against women. Despite economic struggles in developing countries, the United Nations is still trying to promote gender equality, as well as help create a sustainable living environment is all its nations. This non binding programme-of-action asserted that governments have a responsibility to meet individuals' reproductive needs, rather than demographic targets. The World Health Organization cites the example of women not being allowed to travel alone outside the home to go to the hospital , and women being prevented by cultural norms to ask their husbands to use a condom, in cultures which simultaneously encourage male promiscuity, as social norms that harm women's health. Studies on Intimate partner violence victimization among ethnic minorities in the United Studies have consistently revealed that immigrants are a high-risk group for intimate violence. Special measures for gender equality in the United Nations It is the vision that men and women should be treated equally in social , economic and all other aspects of society, and to not be discriminated against on the basis of their gender. Their goals also include giving women who work certain full-time jobs equal pay to the men with the same job. For example, topfreedom , the right to be bare breasted in public, frequently applies only to males and has remained a marginal issue. By presidential decree, the Republic of Kazakhstan created a Strategy for Gender Equality — to chart the subsequent decade of gender equality efforts. The feminist movement in Japan has made many strides which resulted in Rethe Gender Equality Bureau , but Japan still remains low in gender equality compared to other industrialized nations. It was adopted by the African Union in the form of a protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights and came into force in According to some theories, violence against women is often caused by the acceptance of violence by various cultural groups as a means of conflict resolution within intimate relationships. The notion of gender equality, and of its degree of achievement in a certain country, is very complex because there are countries that have a history of a high level of gender equality in certain areas of life but not in other areas. These levels include reproductive health, economic empowerment, educational empowerment and political empowerment. Another manifestation of the change in social attitudes is the non-automatic taking by a woman of her husband's surname on marriage. Not all beliefs relating to gender equality have been popularly adopted. The United Nation's Millennium Development Goals Report states that their goal is to "achieve gender equality and the empowerment of women". In China, a cultural preference for a male child has resulted in a shortfall of women in the population. Gender biases There has been criticism from some feminists towards the political discourse and policies employed in order to achieve the above items of "progress" in gender equality, with critics arguing that these gender equality strategies are superficial, in that they do not seek to challenge social structures of male domination, and only aim at improving the situation of women within the societal framework of subordination of women to men,  and that official public policies such as state policies or international bodies policies are questionable, as they are applied in a patriarchal context, and are directly or indirectly controlled by agents of a system which is for the most part male. To overcome gender inequality the United Nations Population Fund states that, "Women's empowerment and gender equality requires strategic interventions at all levels of programming and policy-making. Gender disparities in health Social constructs of gender that is, cultural ideals of socially acceptable masculinity and femininity often have a negative effect on health. As such, it called for family planning , reproductive rights services, and strategies to promote gender equality and stop violence against women. This includes both violence committed inside marriage domestic violence as well as violence related to marriage customs and traditions such as dowry , bride price , forced marriage and child marriage. Breastfeeding in public is now more commonly tolerated, especially in semi-private places such as restaurants. In addition, there are also non-Western countries of low religiosity where the contention surrounding gender equality remains.
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