Sunday, 14 February 2016

Factory Women : Exploring the economic, social and Cultural
Stigmatization of "Factory Women in Morocco



The Moroccan women’s plight in their battle for securing a social and economic acceptance within the Moroccan society basically takes two sides: an economic side and sociocultural one.

ü  The history of men cultural dominance is still cannot be wiped out of the agenda of lots of organizations in the way they treat women. Laws concerning women’s rights hardy affect the cultural perception of women as objects rather than human being able to produce.
ü  The majority of companies and factories are still culturally more suited to men than women. In order to break the large disparity between men and women there should be a greater effort to devalue the social and cultural inequalities as well as economic inequalities associated with the image of working women.

Further explanations on cultural stigma of working women:

The socio-demographic profile of the Moroccan population reveals that out of six Moroccan households, one is headed by a woman (22.9 % of households in urban areas and 12.0 % in rural areas) (Skalli, 2001: 80).
In order to understand and make sense of the gender role in economic spheres institutions, we should try to understand gender role within the household.
Bent is a marker of descent, a Moroccan female called bint with reference to her father: Fatima bint Ahmed, means daughter of Ahmed. With the honour or dishonour of the family being contained in the assignation (Dwyer, 1978).
Bint Virgin= bent is a female who‘s not been deflowered= purity.
Issues:

·         Discourse of Hate against working women: emerged to deter and intimidate women from the world of work: women should stay home and give up their jobs for men who are supposed to be the breadwinners. Men are in a critical situation being jobless:  women’s joblessness is not regarded as economically, socially and culturally critical as men’s joblessness.
·         The use of sociocultural data concerning low marriage rate as a means of encouraging men to work and women to stay home. This condition can be only secured by giving more job opportunities to men than women. In this sense, women are seen as the source of this crisis which is seen as a social ill.
·         Wages can be deducted without proper notification, long hours work. So, it is taken for granted (somehow true) that women are docile, passive and easy to manage in comparison with men.
·         Factory women are forced to adapt to sweatshop conditions, unsafe working conditions.
·         Factory owners and manufacturing companies deny these workers medical care and refuse to pay out compensation for their negligence, leaving workers disabled and destitute for life.
·         Unskilled" and "semi-skilled" jobs considered a job that women fit in
·         Factory women are poorer, less powerful, more abused and less valued in our society (Mernisi,1988: 12)
·         Sexual harassment or violence: The lack of adequate means of transportation. Sharing the same means of transportation with men.
·         Labour legislation which has remained unchanged since 1959 when the manufacturing industry was not developed.

Weak social position, weak economic position:

The participation of the Moroccan women in labour market has considerably increased in over the last two decades (from 14.6 percent in 1984, it reached 23.3 percent in 1987 and 32.5 percent in 1999) (Skalli, 2001:77)
Working has enabled Moroccan women to break away from domesticity, patriarchy. However, the patriarchal restrictions still represented in the hate discourse against women working in factories.
In Fes, every early morning hundreds of women rush out to factories, from the slums and overpopulated areas in search of better life. They challenge the social stigmatization .Many of these women work in the factory as daughters, not as an independent, freewheeling new woman.
Unskilled" and "semi-skilled" jobs are considered jobs that women fit in. The lack of labour laws is heavily present in sectors where women work for a merge salaries.
Wages can be deducted without proper notification, long hours work. So, it is taken for granted (somehow true) that Women are docile and passive easy to manage in comparison with men. Why?
Lack of social struggle and awareness about laws regarding labour.

The global financial meltdown affected not only the financial side of women’s development but also the social and the political ones (Gaerlan, Cabrera, Samia and Santoalla, 2005).

Solutions

§  Teaching life skills training and programmes to develop leadership among women for carrier development.

 Combating gender stereotypes and sexism inside factories can prevent violence against women, guaranty equal access to job opportunities and equal salaries
.
 Raising wages as equal as to men, or may be more, can reduce the cultural assumption of factory women as cheap.


§  Without an understanding of why stereotypes of women are so often negative, resistance can and will remain unchallenged (Rutherford, 2011: 4).

§  Economic measurement to curb violence against working women: more effective involvement of organizations and companies for protecting working women.

Ø  The rise in importance to organizations of sustainability and corporate social responsibility is evidence of the fact that organizations now recognize that they are part of a wider social system and are influenced by external material conditions. What goes on in outside society is now organizations’ business. Gender inequalities are part of that (Rutherford, 2011: 13).

§  A more judicial effective engagement of companies in domestic abuse and violence.

Ø  Reported violence against women from abusive husbands should affect their carrier in their job positions and the companies employing them. The company of the perpetrator should be made responsible to pay any physical, psychological and material damage for wives victims of any kind of violence. This should have a great revenue for the company of the victim which will be able to reimburse the victim and help its economy through the flow of capital. This initiative should also encourage company to respect women’s rights and defend protect them.

Saturday, 6 February 2016

  Under-Aged Girls Married off under a Slavery-like Contracts in Morocco



 Under-aged girls married in a form of slavery like-way, through a contract? Yes, it does exists!
Paying the father for marrying off his daughter in exchange of an amount of money that reaches 40.000 Dh sometimes? Isn’t that a form of slavery?

 Let’s talk about the practice of selling off under-aged Moroccan girls. It is called marriage under contract. It combines contradictions and controversies, just like the texture of the Moroccan society. Marriage under a contract is an agreement which is registered in a form of debt written agreement till the daughter reaches the legal age of marriage. Within the anarchy of this practice, the daughter becomes locked inside this imaginary box fortified by traditions with all the commitment it carries with it such as keeping one’s virginity, a quality that is mainly restricted to females. This is another type of marriage that was created as result of the government’s restriction on minor girl’s marriage. This form of marrying off is the closest thing to slavery and human trafficking. The father should be the main part responsible for this kind of ‘trade’ in powerless human being. He should be punished according to legal forms and laws banning slavery. The second part in this crime are the family of the groom. It is immoral and far from being human act to pay in order to marry a child. It is a disgraceful crime to make this marriage agreement conditioned by a written agreement under which the child becomes literally a sort of goods, a thing that can be traded off. Where was this kind of enslaving agreement done? Where are the Moroccan laws? This is absolutely not a unique case. Such kind of practices still dominate the majority of rural communities in Morocco where the rate of under aged marriage is rampant.


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