The crisis has made it more difficult for women to balance work and private life and close the the pay gap with men, according to nearly one third of respondents in an EU-wide survey. The Eurobarometer survey on "women and gender inequalities in the context of the crisis" was commissioned by Parliament on the occasion of International Women's Day on 8 March. Violence against women was also seen as one of the most important gender inequality issues by a third of those polled.
Not surprisingly, these issues were identified by respondents as the top inequality priorities to be tackled for the next European elections in 2014. However, two thirds of people said that in the current crisis creating jobs and fighting unemployment, especially among young people, should come first.
Those surveyed also believed that employers consider very different issues when employing men and women. Almost half thought employers were most concerned about whether a woman had children. Some 40% thought employers would attach more importance to a man's professional qualifications then when recruiting women.