Gender equality

2/21/223:25 PM Iris Ørnhaug

There are many ways to measure gender equality. The figures and text below provide an overview of the status of selected indicators for gender equality at municipal and county level in northern Norway, and on a national basis.

Gender equality is about a fair distribution of power, influence and resources. More and more men are taking paternity leave More and more children are attending kindergarten and the differences in gross pay between men and women are decreasing. This brings us closer to the goals of gender equality (sustainability goal 5). It is also positive that a larger proportion of young people complete upper secondary education. From a gender equality perspective, it is nevertheless problematic that boys, to a lesser extent than girls, manage to complete their educational careers in upper secondary school.

Women in the labor force

The proportion of women in working life has changed little in the period 2010-2019, and the differences are small between the counties in northern Norway and the country as a whole. About three quarters of all women participate in working life.

The proportion of employed women in Troms is nevertheless slightly higher than in the other counties in the north, and since 2016 has also been higher than the national average.

The proportion of women in working life is lower than men (insert link with link to this figure article). The differences are smallest in Finnmark, which is mainly due to the fact that employment among men is lower than elsewhere in the country.

Work is important to secure personal income and thereby avoid poverty and even out inequalities. A solid personal economy also provides positive health benefits. For society, high employment means the supply of valuable labor and increased value creation.

Part-time work

The proportion of women working part-time has varied somewhat from year to year, but increased slightly in Nordland and Troms from 2010-2019. In Finnmark, the share decreased slightly. There are far more women working part-time than men.

Nordland is the county in northern Norway with the highest proportion of female part-time employees, and where the proportion is also higher than the national average. At the opposite end, we find Finnmark and Troms, which have a lower proportion of part-time working women than the national average.

Part-time work usually means lower gross income and a lower old-age pension than the full-time employee receives, which means that women are at a greater risk of poverty.

Gross salary

Gross wages have increased for both men and women in the period 2010-2019, but where the percentage growth is greatest for women. .
In northern Norway, the average gross wage is lowest among women in Nordland, and highest among women in Troms. From 2017, the average wage for women in Troms was also higher than for the national average. , where the average salary for the latter county was also higher than the national average from 2017.

Nevertheless, Men's gross salary for women is still far lower than for men. In 2019, women in Nordland and Troms earned 34 and 30 per cent less than men, respectively, while the corresponding figures for women in Finnmark were 24 per cent.

The differences in pay between men and women must be seen in connection with part-time work, education and career choices, in addition to the business structure in the individual county. The fact that women earn less than men makes them more vulnerable to poverty and inequality.

Female leaders

From 2010 to 2019, the proportion of female leaders in Nordland and Troms increased somewhat, while the proportion in Finnmark decreased slightly. Nevertheless, the proportion of women in management positions is still far smaller than for men. This applies to all northern Norwegian counties and to the country as a whole, even though the proportion of female leaders in Nordland, Troms and Finnmark is higher than the national average.

Municipal council representatives

The municipal election in 2019 led to small changes in gender composition compared with the election four years back in time.

A smaller proportion of female municipal council politicians basically gives women less opportunity to influence political processes and decisions locally.

Paternity leave

The proportion of fathers who take out the father quota is increasing, this applies in all the northernmost counties and on a national basis. The proportion is highest in Troms, where 7 out of 10 took out the full paternity quota or more of the parental benefit period in 2018. It is also higher than the national average. The proportion who took paternity leave in Nordland and Finnmark was almost five and seven percentage points below the level in Troms, respectively.

The decline from 2018-2019 is due to changes in Statistics Norway's data base.

The fact that more and more fathers are taking out the father quota opens up for a more even division of labor between the sexes at home and in working life.

Children in kindergarten

The proportion of 1-5 year olds in kindergartens has increased gradually in the three northernmost counties and on a national basis. The proportion is largest in Troms, which together with Nordland in the period 2010-2019 had a larger proportion of children in kindergartens than the national average. In 2011 -2014, the share in Finnmark was also above the national average.

A high proportion of children in kindergartens should in principle give more mothers opportunities to participate in working life.

Dropout from high school

In Norway, everyone has the right to upper secondary education after the age of 15 and has completed basic education. Completed upper secondary school provides both entrance to a number of professions, but also to further education.

Over time, the drop-out rate among upper secondary school students has been high, but in recent years the drop-out rate has decreased.

Among the pupils who started upper secondary school in 2006, about 35 per cent in Troms and Nordland had not completed within a six-year period, while the corresponding figure for Finnmark was 47 per cent. For the litter, which started eight years later, the dropout rate was far lower; 25 percent of the students in Troms and Nordland had not completed by 2020, while the figure for Finnmark was 31 percent.

It is within the vocational education programs that we find the greatest dropouts. In addition, there are far more boys than girls who drop out of high school.

The northern Norwegian counties, and especially Finnmark, stand out with a high drop-out rate, which is above the average elsewhere in the country.

Research shows that there is a strong connection between grades from primary school and completion and obtained a certificate of competence / vocational certificate in upper secondary school.

Lack of upper secondary school makes it more difficult to have a stable working life connection. It also affects the individual's income and standard of living, in addition to health and life expectancy.