“The Czech Republic is one of the worst countries in gender equality due to the pay differences and the conditions of mothers”, said the Foreign Minister Lubomír Zaorálek at a conference yesterday.

The pay differences between Czech men and women rank among the deepest in Europe: women’s pay is 22% lower (approx. 6,700 crowns a month) on average than men’s. “It is a shame and I feel ashamed of it,” he told the conference.

He added that the causes of the Czech approach to gender equality originate back in the period of the communist regime.

The management positions in the Czech Republic are mostly held by men: on the top positions such as CEO there are less than 4% women in the country.

Based on its overall gender gap index, which measures how women fare relative to men on various measures (including economic participation, educational attainment, health and survival, and political empowerment), the Czech Republic ranked 96 out of 142 countries in the world.

Gender equality in the Czech Republic has declined over the past ten years—it had been ranked 53rd in 2006 but dropped to 75th by 2011. Alarmingly, the Czech Republic fell 13 places between 2013 and 2014.

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