Half of female media workers paid low wages

Written by The Frontier Post

Monitoring Desk

KABUL: Nearly half of female media workers in Afghanistan are paid low wages and most of them say their work environment is unsafe, found a new survey released.

According to the survey, more than half of those interviewed said they worked in the decision making level in their outlets media while 70 percent called their work in media as valuable, convincing but challenging as well.

The survey was conducted by Killid Group with support of UNESCO and South Asia Women’s Network (SAWN).

The survey interviewed 254 female media workers aged between 18 to 55 years in Kabul and Nangarhar, Baklh, Herat, Kunduz, Kandahar, Khost, Badakhshan and Baghlan provinces both online and face to face from May to November this year.

Najiba Ayubi, director of the Killid Group, who announced the survey findings in Kabul, said the survey assessed the situation of women working in Afghanistan media.

Based on the report, 65 percent of the respondents said they were mid-level employees, 21 percent said they were low level employees and 14 percent said they were high level.

Nearly 24 percent of the respondents received less than $100, 60 percent between $100 and $240, 12 percent from $250 to $500 and the rest between $500 to $1000 as monthly salaries.

The survey shows 44 percent of the interviewees pocketed salaries like men but 47 percent said their salaries were small compared men’s while nine percent said refused to information.

The report says 23 percent of the respondents said capacity building in their offices was great, more than 27 percent said it was very good, nearly 27 percent said it was good, nearly 12 percent called it fair and nine percent said it was weak while two percent did not respond.

In the survey, more than 34 percent of the respondents said men believed women could play their role in any field and level, but nearly 15 percent said men were sensitive about gender equality in the media.

More than 25 percent of the interviewees said men in the media considered women’s role in decision making as important.

Almost 12 percent of the female workers said their work environment was friendly. However, other respondents provided different views.

According to the survey, 87 percent of media workers said they did not face sexual harassment during work; nine percent said faced sexual harassment, 12 percent said they faced language and tribal discrimination.

Mahmod Mubariz, director of Radio Killid, said 1,700 women worked in media across the country and 770 of them worked on news and the rest in administrative area.

The survey also offered some suggestions for improving the situation of female media workers in the country.

It recommended increase in female workers’ wages, hiring women in administrative areas, eliminating violence and harassment against them and creating essential facilities for women.

Sayed Aqa Hussain Fazil Sancharaki, deputy information and culture minister, said Afghan women’s presence in all areas had increased particularly in the media over the past 17 years.

However, he said the number of female journalists had decreased in recent years due to cultural and security problems.

The Ministry of Information and Culture in cooperation with the private media would work to resolve problems women journalists face and increase their number in future, he concluded. (Pajhwok)

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