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Gender equality

Society, business, politics: The Federal Government is strengthening the role of women in all areas of public and private life.
Frau im Meeting
© Getty Images/Digital Vision

Parental leave, family allowance, and improved overall conditions for day-care for babies and pre-schoolers continue to create the preconditions for the equal treatment of women as laid down in the Basic Law The Basic Law The Basic Law determines that Germany is a constitutional state: All state authorities are subject to judicial control. Section 1 of the Basic Law is of particular relevance. It stipulates that respect for human dignity is the most important aspect of the constitution: “Human dignity shall be… Read more › . Whereas in the education sector young women have not only caught up with, but in part overtaken young men (in 2019 53.7 percent of those who attained a university entrance qualification were women and they made up 51.8 percent of new students in 2019), there are still differences between the sexes as regards pay and career paths: On average, women working full-time only earn around 80 percent of the salary of their male counterparts. They also continue to be under-represented in managerial roles. Today, about every eighth board member of DAX corporations is a woman.

In 2015 the Law on Equal Participation of Women and Men in Leadership Positions entered into force in the private and public sectors. Among other things, it stipulates that women must occupy 30 percent of seats on the supervisory councils of companies listed on the stock exchange. In autumn 2020, the coalition government agreed on a quota for corporate boards: For publicly-listed companies in which the payroll is large enough to mean staff codetermination is mandatory, if there are more than three members then one member must be a woman in future. Moreover, in its Coalition Agreement in 2018 the Federal Government Federal Government The Federal Government and cabinet is made up of the Federal Chancellor and the Federal Ministers. While the Chancellor holds the power to issue directives, the ministers have departmental powers, meaning that they independently run their respective ministries in the framework of those directives… Read more › set the target of equal gender participation in managerial functions in the civil service by 2025. Of late, the proportion of women in the Bundestag The Bundestag The Bundestag is made up of the elected representatives of the German people. In principle elections to the Bundestag are proportionally representative, with each party’s share of the vote in the election reflecting the number of seats it occupies in the parliament. But the electoral system also… Read more › has fallen: It is currently at 31.2 percent. That said, until 1983 less than 10 percent of the parliamentarians were women.