Gender bias and inequality being called out on International Women's Day

Source: 1News

"Choose to challenge" - that's the rallying call behind this year's campaign marking International Women's Day, as people around the globe are being asked to call out gender bias and inequality.

So how is New Zealand tracking and what more needs to be done in Aotearoa?

"Generation Z has really taken the call to stand up for women's rights, and not just females, but males and everyone in our generation," Morgyn Jakob, head girl at Lower Hutt’s Sacred Heart College says.

There is no shortage of female leaders at Parliament. Labour and National both have women in charge.

The Greens and the Māori Party have wāhine co-leaders. ACT’s deputy is also female.

But outside of politics, the statistics aren't great.

“There is much that needs to be done. It can't just be a measure of how many women are in boards or in Parliament,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says.

“I think we do really well but there “are still for many women, life is pretty hard,” Judith Collins says.

Research shows women are less likely to own property, earning 9.5 per cent less than men for an hour's work.

Gender Equality advocate, Vanisa Dhiru says “it's been getting better for Māori women, for Pasifika women, even though Pasifika women are at the bottom of that scale but for Asian women and women that look like me, the pay gap is increasing on average”.

A new documentary, Revolt, she said explores feminism in New Zealand and calls on leaders to do more.

“It's great that we were the first in the world to give women the vote. But it's 2021 and we're simply not there and I really want to know why,” Revolt director, Louise Lever says.

A Mana Wāhine inquiry before the Waitangi Tribunal is considering Treaty of Waitangi breaches against Māori women.

“It's an indigenous rights issue, it's a Treaty partnership issue, it's an inequity issue,” Ripeka Evans, Mana Wāhine claimant says.

“I don't think that there is a generation that has missed a beat in terms of being able to assert their leadership - I mean that's the essence of the claim, is that we were rangatira in our own right,” Evans says.