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Society

Cypriot Women Feel Pandemic-Driven Psychological, Financial Impact

NICOSIA – More than other women in the European Union, those on Cyprus have suffered more fallout financially and psychologically from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

That was the finding of a Eurobarometer poll conducted ahead of International Women’s Day 2022, said the Cyprus Mail, with 83 percent of Cypriot women citing the effect compared to the EU average of 77 percent.

Ombudswoman Maria Stylianou-Lottides, in a message to mark the day, said that on Cyprus 57 percent of women surveyed said the pandemic cut their income and 54 percent said there was a toll on their mental health, compared to the EU average of 40 percent. It wasn’t explained why.

The poll was done from Jan. 25-Feb. 2 across all 27 EU Member States and included a total of 26,741 interviews, although only 531 on Cyprus not said

Lottides said that International Women’s Day was established to display the  unequal relationship between men and women and remind of the need for access equal opportunities.

The European Parliament in 2014 adopted a non-binding resolution to fight violence against women, which hasn’t succeeded and she said that, “Eight years later, as shown by the Eurobarometer, gender-based violence and especially domestic violence continues to increase in an environment that has worsened the situation.” She didn’t say what Cyprus is doing about it.

“Pandemic, lockdowns, work problems, family management and now war…,” she lamented about the ongoing litany of troubles that women face two decades into the 21st Century.

Lottides said her office is working to turn the tide, including a 2021 information campaign called Break the Silence, which encouraged women to report incidents of sexual harassment.

She also cited two reports about gender discrimination against women volunteer Non-Commissioned Officers (NCOs) in their tenure and in their professional development in the National Guard.

“Taking into account the impact that, according to the recent Eurobarometer, the pandemic seems to have had on the professional and personal life of women in Cyprus, our office will continue to push for the transformation of state structures and policies for the benefit of women, address the under-representation of women in political and economic decision-making bodies and hierarchies, and work to eliminate violence, harassment, gender stereotypes and sexism,” she also said.

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