Citizens for Justice and Peace

Poor and Dalit women in India struggle with illiteracy, early death: UN

23, Feb 2018 | CJP Team

A UN Women report on gender equality as part of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals SDGs) has underscored how poorer women in India struggle compared to their wealthier counterparts, according to The Hindu. According to data from Demographic and Health Surveys, an Indian women, aged between 20 and 24 and from a poor rural home is 5.8 times more at risk of marrying before she turns 18, and becoming a teenaged mother compared to a woman from a wealthy urban home. She is also 20 times more likely to have never been in school compared to her wealthier peer. The report considered Indians between 15 and 49 in homes in the highest 20% and lowest 20% of wealth distribution, finding that more than 80% of women in the lowest 20% are illiterate. Citing the Survey on Morbidity and Health Care in the NSS 60th round survey, the report also noted that the average age of death for a Dalit woman is 14.6 years younger than that of a higher caste woman. The report indicated this could be attributed to factors such as insufficient access to sanitation facilities, water, and healthcare. 



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