Gates Foundation pledges $2.1B to advance women's leadership in healthcare + more

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has pledged $2.1 billion over the next five years to address gender equity and promote women's leadership in industries including healthcare.

The foundation will give $100 million over five years and $230 million over 10 years to accelerate women's inclusion in leadership roles, specifically focusing on health, law and economics, according to a June 30 news release.

Five things to know:

  1. The large commitment's goal is to combat the widening gender equity gap caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

  2. Unemployment for women grew by 9 million from 2019-20 and is projected to grow another 2 million in 2021. For men, unemployment is projected to decrease in 2021, according to the International Labour Organization.

  3. Global unemployment for women is projected to remain 13 million below its 2019 level, while male unemployment is expected to get close to its 2019 level.

  4. Putting women in leadership roles in the healthcare sector will improve women's health overall by ensuring their voices are heard when decisions are being made.

  5. "There are 225 COVID-19 task forces in 137 countries, but only 24 percent of the people serving on them are women," Melinda French Gates said in a blog post. "The only way to choose a different future is to guarantee that women are in the rooms where pivotal decisions get made."

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