Italy's population in 2021 was around 59 million, dipping below 60 million for the first time since 2013. The country's female population is larger than the male by about 1.5 million, with 30.4 million females and 28.9 million males. Despite lots of progress and achievements in the fight against gender inequality, women in Italy are still victims of harmful stereotypes, discrimination, and physical, and psychological violence. This concerns women and girls of all ages and social backgrounds, as shown by data on unemployment, the pay gap, educational achievement, political participation, access to health services, and equal treatment in general. Some of the many aspects which give an overview on the participation of women in the country's life are employment and politics.
Career and employment
When compared to other European countries, Italy performs poorly in terms of participation of women in the labor market. The unemployment rate for women is by around two percentage points higher than for men. Moreover, young women work part-time at least twice as much as young men. Additionally, the economic inactivity rate shows a concerning situation: the participation of women in the labor market, either employed or unemployed, is almost half compared to men. In fact, Italy has the highest percentage of young people who are neither in education nor in training (NEET) among all EU countries, with the share of NEET being particularly high for women, especially in the Southern regions. In Italy, over 45 percent of women are economically inactive. Inequalities in the labor market can also be observed in the treatment of women. Women in Italy earned about 3,000 euros less than men annually.
Some other differences are to be found in the lower participation of women in the political life of the country, such as in the engagement in political activities or in the political roles occupied. Women, indeed, participate less in political debates and in mass-meetings. They also do free activities for a political party or support financially a party less frequently when compared to men. In terms of political presence, data on the number of female political leaders mirrors this low general participation. Only 14 percent of all mayors in Italy are women. A similar situation is reflected in parliamentary participation. The Italian Parliament consists of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate of the Republic. In the Senate, there are 320 Senators, of which only 112 are women. In the Chamber of Deputies there are 628 Deputies, of which 400 are men and 228 are women.
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In the following 6 chapters, you will quickly find the 34 most important statistics relating to "Women in Italy".