A United Nations human development report ranked The Bahamas 76th out of 189 countries on its gender inequality index, making the country one of the worst performers among countries with a “very high” human development index.
The Human Development Report 2019’s gender inequality index is “a measure of women’s empowerment in health, education and economic status”.
The index takes numerous factors into account, including: the maternal mortality ratio; adolescent birth rate; share of parliamentary seats held by women; women’s share of the population with secondary education; women’s participation in the labor force and salary differences between the sexes.
A lower gender inequality index score indicates lower inequality between men and women.
The report revealed that there was an income disparity of over 33 percent between women and men, a three percent increase compared to last year’s report.
It revealed that the gross national income per capita for men was $34,290, while for women, it was $22,827. This placed women’s gross national income per capita well below the national average of $28,395.
The report also found that women in The Bahamas have a significantly higher unemployment rate than men, ranking the lower third of countries on the indicator. It also revealed that more boys are enrolled in pre-primary and primary schools than girls in the country.
However, The Bahamas ranked in the middle third for share of seats in Parliament. The Bahamas ranked in the upper third with respect to the proportion of women to men with some secondary education as well as the share of employment, with women representing 47 percent of the people employed in the country.
The Bahamas also was in the top third of countries for the prevalence of antenatal care and the proportion of births attended by skilled health personnel. The country ranked in the middle third for the number of mandatory paid maternity leave days.