How does the European life look like?

news 2We are often talking about the “European lives standards”. But we know little about the actual life of Europeans. We know a lot about Europe as a dream, but not so much about Europe as a reality.

What is a real European’s life? How do Europeans care about children and educate them? How are men and women communicating with each other? Are they really equality? How do they organize their peaceful life and defence? How do they arrange their life environment?

Let’s have a look at some of the examples to understand the reality of daily life in Europe.

Europe – is the continent of equal rights with equality between men and women being one of the main. Different EU countries have different situation, but there is a general trend: the movement toward equal opportunity, equal responsibilities and equal salary for men and women. The greatest success in this was achieved by Scandinavian countries.

For example:  in Swiss men take an active part in baby carrying. Any of the parents can take the parental leave of 480 days and it can be used by month, by week, by day or even by an hour – upon the decision of parents. Each parent has their own 90 days from the total 480. Each of them is obliged to take 90 days of parental leave and these days cannot be transferred to another parent. This equal sharing of responsibilities gives women more time for work and social life. The number of women in senior positions at the companies has increasing: from 29% companies being headed by women in 2006 (public or private companies) to 36% in 2012. This trend is even more significant in politics: almost 50% of Swedish parliamentarians are female; 24 from 13 of government ministers are women. Compare this with negligible number of women among Ukrainian politicians.

To achieve these results the public policy is needed. In Sweden, for example, there is a minister for gender equality. He or she is responsible for compliance with the principles of equality in all spheres of life, from education to employment. The country has also the state Ombudsman agency covering gender equality issues, which employs about 90 workers.

Swedish experience proves that equality between women and men is an important right, but society has to fight for it.

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