Emine Kart – ANKARA
The first action plan in Turkey focusing specifically on women’s employment, with a focus on contributing to women’s increased participation in the labor force, has been launched in the capital Ankara.
The action plan, launched on May 17 at the International Labor Organization (ILO) office in Turkey, will be implemented by the Turkish Employment Agency (İŞKUR).
The plan covers the 2016-2018 period and was prepared by a team made up of representatives from 20 institutions as part of the “More and Better Jobs for Women: Women’s Empowerment through Decent Work in Turkey” initiative. The initiative is jointly implemented by the ILO and İŞKUR with the financial contribution of the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) on the basis of enhancing women’s employment and working conditions in Turkey.
The ILO said İŞKUR has a significant role in employment and working life, adding that an institutional approach to women’s participation in the labor force is one of the most crucial components of development, economic growth and tackling unemployment.
The ILO Office for Turkey launched the plan with participation of officials from İŞKUR and representatives from stakeholder organizations, including various public organizations and institutions, civil society organizations and confederations of labor and employer unions.
The plan is focused on two goals: “1. Acquisition of vocational skills and orientation towards jobs for increasing women’s employment” and “2. Increasing women’s means of access to the labor market.”
For achieving the first goal, it outlines ensuring that on-the-job training programs are organized in such a manner as to increase women’s employment; developing a gender equality perspective; increasing the implementation of the clause “Provincial Boards of Employment and Vocational Training will target equality of opportunity between men and women and ensure the participation of a representative of an NGO working on women’s issues” in the Prime Ministerial circular 2010/14 on Increasing the Employment of Women and Ensuring Equality of Opportunity; identifying employment mobility problems of women and keeping these points in mind during the realization of policies; supporting projects prepared for the vocational training and employment of women; ensuring the continuity of special support programs for the provision of job opportunities for women, especially those looking for work for the first time; increasing the availability of childcare units and playrooms for the children of women attending Adult Education Courses; increasing the proportion of women being placed in jobs in the private sector through İŞKUR; carrying out studies that consider the fields for which women are in demand in the labor market and the need for professional and basic skills; and actively using consultation services to direct women who are victims of violence toward job vacancies.
Household women’s labor force
According to a regular household women’s labor force survey conducted by Turkish Employment Agency (İŞKUR) Directorate-General, 7 percent of women in the country who do not participate in the labor force are ready to work but are not actively searching for jobs.
Of the total number of women not participating in the labor force, 1.3 percent have “lost hope” of finding employment, while 57.3 percent cite being busy with housework.
In terms of work status, most women (61.7 percent) are employed in return for wages or daily pay, while 1.2 percent are employers. Of women who are informally employed, 56.8 percent are unpaid household laborers, while 26.9 percent work for a wage or daily pay.