38% of women with higher education in Kurdistan are unemployed and looking for jobs.
Speaking to the state-run Fars news agency, Leila Ajhir, Director General of Women and Family Affairs in Kurdistan, said: “38% of women with higher education in Kurdistan province are unemployed.” (The state-run Fars news agency, November 9, 2019)
The mullahs’ regime announced in 2015 that the unemployment rate for educated women was 85.9 percent. (The state-run Mehr news agency, January 5, 2016)
Given the economic downturn and rising unemployment in the country, one can only guess how much this figure has increased.
On women’s employment in Iran, the official Iran Estekhdam website wrote on April 4, 2016, “Women’s employment in Iran is insignificant compared to developing countries. Women are constantly denied the right to work and are generally employed in informal, low-paid sectors.”
Rouhani’s deputy for women and family affairs, Massoumeh Ebtekar gave a more general picture of the situation saying, “Unfortunately, the number of unemployed educated females are four times greater than unemployed educated males.”(The state-run ISNA news agency, October 5, 2019)
Earlier, another report had been published on the low wages of educated women in Astara. Although, unemployment is rampant everywhere in Iran and wages do not match market prices, the wage gap between men and women of Astara is incredible.
The situation is particularly harsh on educated women since employment in Astara is almost impossible because offices do not have the capacity to recruit. One of the reasons women accept such low wages is fearing isolation and seclusion at home.
In Tehran, too, highly educated women are frequently seen in the streets or in metro wagons peddling to earn a living because of being discriminated against in job opportunities.
Before the 1979 Revolution, women’s participation in the labor force was 12 percent. The World Bank put the average value for Iran from 1990 to 2017 at 14.21 percent with a minimum of 9.83 percent in 1990 and a maximum of 19.41 percent in 2005. While Iran’s population and consequently the population of women has more than doubled since 1979.