Delila Hasanbegović: Women Bear the Brunt of the Crisis Caused by the Pandemic

Sarajevo Open Centre’s Programme Coordinator, Delila Hasanbegović, has written an article for the publication issued by Friedrich Ebert Foundation, named: Political Trends & DynamicsThe COVID-19 Pandemic in Southeast Europe: Experiences on the Ground, covering the topic of labour and status of women in fields of trade and services.

„It is no surprise that women too often bear the brunt of any crisis, and there is no exception in the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and its current and forthcoming crises. Every crisis takes place on the back of workers, especially in the fields of trade and services, and their rights are often limited, denied, and endangered. The COVID-19 situation has additionally intensified and highlighted existing class differences and gender inequalities“, Delila writes.

Delila spoke to the president of B&H Trade and Service Workers Union, Ms. Mersiha Beširović, who described the position in these fields during the current situation: „It’s incomprehensible, for example, that employers still haven’t properly compensated their workers who brought out tens of tons of flour with their own hands for the citizens to buy. Those workers had their eyes capillaries break from the weight of the cargo, open wounds on their hands from disinfectants, headaches from breathing through masks that they’ve been using for days, etc. Meanwhile, their employers, who in half a month made as much as a six-month worker income, cannot give up their part of the cake and thank those women“, said Ms. Beširović.

Delila got first hand information about working in a supermarket, talking to one of the retail workers of the Amko retail chain.

Delila’s article, as well as the whole publication, is available here.