Gender Equality Ombudswoman, Visnja Ljubicic, warned about the vulnerable status of women in rural areas on Wednesday, calling on institutions to help empower rural women, state agency Hina said, carrying a press release.
“More difficult access to the police, medical institutions, or free legal aid, makes rural women more exposed to gender-based and domestic violence,” Ljubicic said in a press release she sent the media ahead of the International Day of Rural Women, observed on Friday, 15 October.
“Furthermore, lower education, no access to life-long education and retraining, poor transport infrastructure, lower income, and insufficient capacity of pre-school institutions for children make it harder for rural women to find employment,” she said.
“On the other hand, the skills and creativity of rural women are a potential that the development of rural Croatian areas could be based on,” Ljubicic said, and added that in three out of ten family-run farms in Croatia “women play the main role” and nearly half of these women are over 65 years of age.
Ljubicic said that under according to recommendations issued by the UN Committee for the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) countries are expected to set up an “encouraging institutional, legislative, and legal framework to boost rural development” and that “agricultural gender-sensitive policies should be applied to enable women to be more visible both as stakeholders and decision-makers, as well as beneficiaries.”