East Asian governments have demonstrated in their response to the current global economic crisis that they have learned critical lessons from the major financial meltdown in the 1990s. They have provided timely stimulus packages and have proactively targeted those who generally are more vulnerable to shocks. But have governments really understood the impact of the crisis on the least resilient people of the region and tailored their support to meet their needs? Oxfam recognises that women experience poverty differently from men; at times of acute pressure women are expected to bring in income, run a household, care for children and elders and more. This research report draws on country case studies from Thailand, Philippines, Cambodia, Vietnam and Indonesia. It seeks to identify and recognise how the financial crisis has impacted on women, in order test whether East Asian governments are doing enough to support the most vulnerable. Key recommendations
- Governments should collect gender-disaggregated data in order to ensure that research on the impact of the crisis contributes to appropriate policies and measures to support women.
- Governments should encourage equity of education, training and employment opportunities for women's development and empowerment.
- Social protection measures for all workers, including women, in both the public and the private sectors, must be legislated and enforced. Such measures should include, at the least, provisions for retirement pensions and health care that are gender neutral.