International Women's Day: Recognizing the need to Press for Progress

Today is International Women’s Day – a day to celebrate the accomplishments of women worldwide and #PressforProgress. While strides have been made towards gender equality, we still have a very long way to go. The World Economic Forum’s 2017 Global Gender Gap Report shows us that gender parity is over 200 years away. This is unacceptable and it will take all of us to accelerate the change we need. .

My campaign has focused on the critical need to support our region’s children and our senior citizens. On their own, these are two very important issues about which I am passionate, but they are much more than that. These are also critical issues for the equal rights of women. According to the Family Caregiver Alliance, approximately 66% of all caregivers are women. This means that women are more likely than men to sacrifice their careers and dreams to care for their children or their parents. This social phenomenon has placed women at a huge disadvantage. According to the Family Caregiver Alliance, 29% of women forgo a job promotion because of their role as caregiver, 33% decrease their work hours, 16% quit their jobs, and 13% retire early.  While these are personal decisions, societal pressures and expectations of women to care for others are significant reasons why women sacrifice so much for the ones they love.

Providing high-quality, affordable and accessible child care and stronger supports for seniors would move the San Diego region more quickly towards the equality women deserve. Providing these resources would help empower women by restoring their time and increasing the financial stability of many homes. Similarly, placing more economic and social value on caregiving by paying reasonable wages to qualified individuals would help change perceptions around the idea of caregiving. I recognize my privilege as a man in our society. It is a privilege that comes with an obligation to fight for equality.  Our campaign is committed to providing greater leadership that will help our children and our region’s seniors.  This leadership will also support moving towards gender equality and true opportunity for women and girls in our society.  

Omar Passons