UAE survey shows a third of expat women face sexism in the workplace

Published:  24 Jul at 6 PM
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Tagged: UAE, Study Abroad
A new study has revealed that around 29 per cent of expat women working in the UAE are experiencing sexism in the workplace on a regular basis.

The survey, carried out by and involving 1,100 expat women working in the emirates, shows that gender discrimination within the UAE workplace runs at almost double that in Western countries. Some 63 per cent of expat female employees, however, stated they had not experienced gender bias in their places of work.

On the serious issue of abuse and personal harassment, 81 per cent of respondents said they had not been exposed to such treatment, but 13 per cent admitted they had been victims of both harassment and abuse. Women who knew friends who had been victims of harassment and abuse amounted to 29 per cent of those surveyed, with incidents also doubling those reported in Western countries.

Significantly, most expat women felt that their careers were not limited, with only 21 per cent saying that they felt affected to some extent. The authors of the survey noted that, taking into account the ‘UAE factor’ with its male dominance issues, the results were not as had been expected after the emirates had ranked highly in a global female education survey.

As regards the existence of a glass ceiling, 38 per cent of women surveyed reported a balance of male and female workers at senior management level, whilst a further 20 per cent said that their companies had no women in senior management positions. The reason for this, given by 61 per cent of respondents, was the lack of opportunity for female senior executives.
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