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Turkey

World Bank Chips In On Turkey's Next Challenge: Gender Parity In The Workplace

With women long shut out of positions of power in Turkish society, the World Bank has created a new program to offer its official stamp of approval for businesses in Turkey that strive for gender parity.

Istanbul (Matthias Rhomberg)
Istanbul (Matthias Rhomberg)

Worldcrunch NEWSBITES

ISTANBUL – Though well on its way to becoming a regional model for democratic capitalism, Turkey still faces questions about human rights and certain outmoded ways of doing business. The glaring lack of gender parity in the workplace is a bit of both.

The World Bank estimates that just one-quarter of eligible Turkish women currently work, and many of those do so off the books. In job interviews, women are often asked questions that are never posed to their male counterparts: "Are you married?" or "Do you have any children?" If answered in the affermative, notes World Bank chief Robert Zoellick, "it can be the reason why women, at times, are not hired."

Zoellick was in Istanbul recently, largely to salute the engine of the Turkish economy. But he also took time to ink an unprecedented accord with Gulden Turktan, head of the Women Entrepreneurs Association of Turkey (KAGIDER). Dubbed the "Model of Equal Opportunity," this new World Bank certificate program is aimed at encouraging companies to aim for sexual equality in the workplace. To start with, 11 Turkish companies have applied to recieve the first stage certificate of the project, which aims to create a 100% equal male-female work environment.

Zoellick said that Turkey has shown serious improvement in the fields of female health and education, including the near complete removal of sexual differentiation in primary schools. But improvements are still needed in the work place. "We don't just see this project as a corporate responsibilty project," said Zoellick. "It is also a project that will increase the wealth of this nation."

Gaining a certificate from the World Bank and KAGIDER will be a boost for the brand-name of the companies, especially those doing business abroad. "We hope that in the near future this program will go beyond the borders of Turkey, and become an example for other countries."

Read the original article in Turkish

Matthias Rhomberg

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Economy

What's Driving The New Migrant Exodus From Cuba

Since Cuba reopened its borders last December after COVID closures, the number of people leaving the island has gone up significantly. Migration has been a constant in Cuban life since the 1950s. But this article in Cuba's independent news outlet El Toque shows just how important migration is to understand the ordeals of everyday life on the island.

March for the 69th anniversary of the beginning of the Cuban Revolution.

Loraine Morales Pino

HAVANA — Some 157,339 Cubans crossed the border into the United States between Oct. 1, 2021 and June 30, 2022, according to the U.S. Border Patrol — a figure significantly higher than the one recorded during the 1980 Mariel exodus, when a record 125,000 Cubans arrived in the U.S. over a period of seven months.

Migrating has once again become the only way out of the ordeal that life on the island represents.

Cubans of all ages who make the journey set off towards a promise. They prefer the unknown to the grim certainty that the Cuban regime offers them.

Migration from Cuba has been a constant since the 1950s.

In 1956, the largest number of departures was recorded in the colonial and republican periods, with the arrival of 14,953 Cubans in the United States, the historical destination of migratory flows. Since the January 1959 revolution, that indicator has been exceeded 30 times.

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