Today marks the 25th National Women’s Day Off, where women all over the country are encouraged to leave their jobs at 14:25, in order to draw attention to the gender inequality that exists in the workplace still.
The first Women’s Day Off was held in 1975, where women across the country were encouraged to leave their jobs early. This was to bring attention to the fact that women were (and are) not paid for a full day’s work when the wage gap is taken into consideration. The strike caught the attention of international media.
Over time, the event has gathered more steam. Today, even the mayor of Reykjavík himself has encouraged the event, telling reporters last week, “In the fight against gender inequality, it is very important that the many voices of the women who work for the city of Reykjavík are heard and seen in this symbolic fashion.”
The gender gap varies from industry to industry, but the average in 2009 was about 10% in the capital area, and as high as 40% in the countryside, making the national average about 19.5%.
A march from Hallgrímkirkja down to Arnarhóll will begin at 15:00. There, a concert will be held. The Grapevine encourages women everywhere to show solidarity with this cause and take part in the strike.
For more information on the history of this event, click here.
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