Today, the Biden-Harris Administration announced a monumental request to increase funding for Gender Equality to $2.6 billion USD.
The following quote can be attributed to Ritu Sharma, CARE Vice President of US Programs and Policy:
“We are delighted by the announcement that the Administration will put forth a serious budget request of $2.6 billion for global initiatives to address gender equality and women’s rights. After years of losing ground, this investment is an excellent step.
This announcement comes not a moment too soon as the need to address the rights and needs of people of all genders remains critical. Our new research — She Told Us So (Again) — shows us that the negative impacts of COVID on women and girls are getting worse every day, because crises only make discrimination worse. According to the report, many women are asking for mental health support, with 63% of women CARE spoke to prioritizing mental health support, followed by 59% requesting food security assistance and 55% livelihoods assistance.
CARE USA and its advocates have been sounding the alarm on the ever-increasing global need for funds to address injustices facing women and girls. One in three women will face some form of intimate partner violence in her lifetime, with an estimated 70% of women having reported experiencing gender-based violence in humanitarian emergencies. LGBTQI+ people are vulnerable to criminalization and marginalization when accessing necessary services and support. Globally, women and girls spend between 2-10x the amount of time on unpaid care activities than men, limiting their participation in the labor force and keeping girls out of school. More than 60% of the world’s hungry are women and girls; at the same time, women and girls disproportionately bear the burden of meeting their families’ food and care needs. Young boys are raised to conform to harmful forms of masculinity, leading to higher rates of alcohol and substance abuse, and continuing generational cycles of harm and inequality. Now, the COVID-19 pandemic threatens to set back gender equality by an estimated 25 years.
But we are not without hope. The announcement by the White House is a remarkable demonstration of the Administration’s commitment to gender equality. In its first 100 days, the Biden-Harris administration set a bold agenda to redress gender inequalities, and with this request, progress is being made to counter years of dwindling resources for gender equality. It is my immense hope that U.S. Congress will meet the call set forth by the Administration and ensure that communities have the resources and funding they need to achieve transformational change.
CARE USA applauds the Administration for this show of leadership and looks forward to working with the Administration and Congress to ensure this budget is secured and that programs are successfully implemented.”