Women form 70% of the global health workforce fighting on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic, yet women's expertise and perspectives are woefully underrepresented in decision-making spaces including on national task forces and WHO’s COVID-19 emergency response committee. To foster dialogue on how gender inequity is impacting the global response to COVID-19, Johnson & Johnson Foundation partnered with Women in Global Health (WGH) last year on a digital COVID 50/50 Action Labs series. Each Action Lab, produced in collaboration with the Johnson & Johnson Center for Health Worker Innovation, addressed one of the WGH Five Asks through interactive panel discussions showcasing the voices of those central to the response to COVID-19 and were designed to drive local advocacy.
Selected recordings from the Action Labs are below:
Action Lab 1: Women, Leadership & Power
The Center for Health Worker Innovation has partnered with Women in Global Health to Engage! Enable! And Ignite Action! around gender equality in global health leadership and focus on elevating women in global health security decision-making and women's leadership within the health and social care workforce.
Action Lab 2: Safe and Decent Conditions for Women Health Workers
From providing PPE to promoting mental health and building resilience, protect women on the front lines of care by turning applause into action that will ensure health workers, most of whom are women, are operating in safe and decent working conditions.
Action Lab 3: Recognizing, Recording and Rewarding Women’s Unpaid Health and Social Care Work
Every year, women contribute an estimated $3 trillion in labor to health, of which almost half is unrecognized and unpaid. COVID-19 has only exacerbated the challenges frontline health workers face to be fairly compensated for their work. Learn what actions we can take to recognize the vital work of those on the front lines.
Action Lab 4: Building Back With Gender Equality
Despite international agreements and evidence of best practice, fewer than 60 countries are currently reporting sex disaggregated data to WHO on COVID-19 infections and mortality. Ignoring the gender aspects of outbreaks and pandemics hinders prevention and response management by obscuring critical risk factors and trends. Experts discuss the importance of gender disaggregated data and action for a gender-transformative agenda for pandemic preparedness.
Action Lab 5: Galvanizing the Power of Women's Movements
COVID-19 has increased the demand for women's movements and organizations, particularly following increases of gender-based violence and vulnerability. The fifth and final Action Lab in the series focused on the need for resources to reach frontline women's organizations delivering essential services in health and social care, and unpack how to leverage these movements to address critical issues in global health security.