Still a lot to do in the protection of women’s rights in Cambodia. In many labor cases, women continue to get less salaries than men. Sexual violence against girls and women does not see to stop: domestic violence, rape, child abuse, child prostitution, human traffic… The current problem of Cambodian maids in Malaysia that face untold human rights abuses, has not yet a satisfactory solution. Husbands that abandon their wives and children to let them without social protection plus the big number of women living under poverty.
Although this gloomy picture, it is possible to say that things have improved in the last decade and that Cambodian women have a little more opportunities to defend their rights before their society, thanks to the work of different organizations to strength the law.
However, it is also necessary to call the attention over men!
It is not because we have to fight for their rights. Of course, human rights include them. But because the great attention to defend or improve the women’s rights can lead to ignore the role of men in society, moving them from the dominant and privileged social position to the ignored one.
In this moment it happens that several organizations and companies seem to discriminate men. This fact is felt especially by young men looking jobs or opportunities to get scholarships, either from official, NGOs or foreign countries. You can find the ‘Women are encouraged to apply’ notice in sites and advertisements. It means, by sure, that men will have little options to pass.
It is good that organizations and institutions are working to improve the living conditions of Cambodian women. Education for women is especially important, because women are the first educator of children in a society like Cambodia.
But we need a balance. Ignoring men is a great risk. Boys and young men need jobs and education too. Letting boys and men without opportunities, mean an increase in criminality, violence and unrest.
Our society is made by men and women. Working to increase the rights of women, do not mean to reduce the opportunities for men. It is not to move the men from the top by placing them down the table, while taking the women down the table to put them at the top… Such logic is also a social unbalance that would produce more problems. The goal is that men and women get the same rights, duties and opportunities before their society. So when you place the notice ‘women are encouraged to apply‘, understand that women ‘are encouraged to apply’ but it will not mean to deny the opportunity to a good candidate only because he is a man.