Women's Rights & Movements in IranWomen of Iran, at the Forefront of Dismissals and...

Women of Iran, at the Forefront of Dismissals and Redundancies


Heavily rooted in the Iranian regime’s misogynistic culture and policies, one of the biggest crises that the regime has inflicted on the Iranian society is the poor living and working conditions of women. Many women who are heads of their households are finding it extremely difficult to support their families due to the lack of job opportunities.

This has created many dangerous social crises. According to the regime’s official statistics, over the past decade, the number of women heads of households has increased by 58 percent in comparison to the number of men.

Currently, the population of women who are the heads of their households goes beyond 3 million across Iran, with around 7 million under their care. Due to unemployment, or the lack of suitable jobs, these women are desperately struggling to get by.

Some of these families, who are supported by the regime’s ‘so-called’ Khomeini Relief foundation, live on low pensions, which are below the ‘absolute poverty line’. According to regime experts and the state-run media, these families live below the ‘death poverty line.’

All of the problems that have befallen these women and their families are due to the low rate of women’s economic participation, which is decreasing yearly. Many women are forced to turn to ‘fake’ jobs, such as peddling on the streets.

The regime’s Statistical Center has reported that the unemployment rate among women with associate degrees and master’s degrees is more than twice that of men, and in doctoral degrees, this figure is in some cases three times or even higher.

However, as is the case with many of the regime’s statistics, these figures have been deliberately downgraded. On April 9, the state-run media outlet, Farhikhtegan wrote an analysis of the status of various indicators of women’s employment, concluding that around 71 percent of graduate women in the country are unemployed.

Regime experts have previously indicated that most of Iran’s terminated employment contracts belong to women, and they face larger threats of layoffs and unemployment than men do. In other words, unemployment is the prime problem for more than 90 percent of Iranian women.

On the other hand, the number of employed women across Iran has decreased from 18.2 percent in 2018 to 17.8 percent in 2019, before dropping to 15.7 percent in 2020.

Previously in May of 2021, the Tehran Chamber of Commerce conducted a report examining the labor force indicators of men and women in Tehran province in the third quarter of 2020. According to the report, the unemployment rate for women aged 15 to 24 in Tehran province was more than 45 percent, a worrying figure for the country’s female population.

Termination of contracts and the chronic unemployment of women have intensified greatly since the coronavirus outbreak which has become the main excuse for employers to remove women from the workplace.

Since the outbreak of coronavirus in Iran, the population of female employees has dropped by 830,000. Such a dramatic fall has not been seen in the country since 2005.

A review of statistics by the regime’s Ministry of Welfare also shows that job security for women is more vulnerable than for men.

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