Tourism and Gender

According to the UNWTO, women make up the majority of the tourism workforce, but  tend to be the lowest paid. The tourism industry can contribute to promoting gender equality by creating opportunities for women and spread awareness of gender issues. Having economic opportunities and education is one of the most important ways for women to empower themselves to seek a better quality of life for themselves, their families and their communities

UN Women and UNWTO Women in Tourism Program

The Global Report on Women in Tourism 2010 confirms that tourism can act as a vehicle for the empowerment of women whilst highlighting the remaining challenges for gender equality in tourism. The UNWTO along with UN Women, a division of the UN working towards gender equality and the empowerment of women, has been working towards enhancing the positive impact of tourism on women’s lives and to bring gender issues to the forefront of the tourism industry. Many non-governmental organisations, such as the MaseualsiuamejMosenyolchicauani (Indigenous Women Acting Together) in Mexico, and the Kenya Association of Women in Tourism (KAWT), work towards raising awareness of women in the tourism industry and giving women the opportunity to advance in the field.

The proposed Women in Tourism Empowerment Programme (WITEP) will promote women’s economic empowerment in tourism through partnerships with tourism stakeholders including the improvement of employment opportunities for women such as skills, supply chain, career advancement and gender awareness. It is important to provide educational activities for women to better improve their opportunities for working within the tourism industry.

Visit The International Ecotourism Society’s (TIES) website to read the full story.

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