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Danish sponsored UNDP-report on the Impact of COVID-19 on Women's Rights in Ukraine

25.11.2020  14:10

Today, the Ambassador participated in the opening of a public exhibition at Mykhailivs'ka Square in Kyiv, which is a part of the UN campaign “16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence”.

Among the speakers at the opening event were the First Lady of Ukraine, Olena Zelenska and the Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration, Olha Stefanishyna.


In relation to this campaign, UNDP in Ukraine has published a report focusing on the impact for COVID-19 on women’s rights in Ukraine. The research identified challenges and provided recommendations to improve the situation with women’s and girls' rights during the COVID-19 pandemic, and assessed its impact on their labour and family rights. Specifically, women feel overwhelmed by the extra burden of combining housework, caregiving, and remote work.

The research also shows that the income of about 40 percent of the women polled decreased. Though men also faced a decrease in income, women still earned less because of the gender pay gap, which remained the same – during the pandemic women continue to be paid about 20 percent less than men.

Among other negative impacts of the pandemic is the increased number of cases of domestic violence. More than 40 percent of those who faced domestic violence among the respondents said they had never experienced it before the lockdown.

19% of all women surveyed reported domestic violence during quarantine. Respondents most often reported psychological violence (insults, humiliation, obscene swearing, etc.) - 41%, the least often - sexual coercion - 9%.

In period of April, 1 till July, 1 there were 46 249 reports on domestic violence, according to National Police. 32% of the women who suffered from domestic violence had to stay with the abuser, only 3% went to shelter.

The study also notes that many women are forced to "lock up" at home with their abusers, because the support services of victims of home violence ceases to work or becomes inaccessible. Providing legal assistance remotely (online, by phone, etc.) is not enough effective in cases of domestic violence.

Based on the report’s key findings, the experts provided their recommendations on how to address the consequences of the lockdown in the short-term and long-term perspectives. Specifically, they recommended that:

  • police respond in a timely and effective manner to all cases of domestic violence, including by issuing instant restraining orders;
  • women in business be supported through the launch of special programmes;
  • employers introduce gender equality policies at work.

In terms of the research, about 700 persons mainly women from all Oblasts of Ukraine were polled.

The analytical report “The Impact of COVID-19 on Women’s Rights in Ukraine” was prepared in partnership with the Office of the Government’s Commissioner for Gender Equality Policy, the Equal opportunities caucus in the Verkhovna Rada with the UNDP in Ukraine support. The report was financed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark with the support of the Human Rights in Ukraine Project, which is being implemented by the UNDP in Ukraine.

Read the entire report here (in Ukrainian):