Women’s Rights Still Lacking in North Korea

The "2023 North Korean Women's Rights Survey Results Report" released recently by Daily NK

The “2023 North Korean Women’s Rights Survey Results Report” released recently by Daily NK

The “2023 North Korean Women’s Rights Survey Results Report” released recently by Daily NK, with support from the Embassy of Canada to the Republic of Korea, reveals a troubling situation for women’s rights in North Korea. Not a single respondent out of 30 believed that the government effectively protects women’s rights in the country.

Low Awareness of Laws and Rights  

The survey exposed a stark lack of awareness and education about women’s rights in North Korea. 70% of respondents had never even heard of the “Women’s Rights Protection Law” enacted in 2010. Moreover, over 80% had never received any education on the topic of women’s rights, highlighting the government’s failure to inform and educate its citizens.

Economic Gains, but Discrimination Remains

The survey found that some North Korean women have seen improvements in their rights and status due to their economic activities. Around one-third of respondents said that women who are skilled and earn a good income have experienced better rights. This shows that as more women participate in the country’s markets and earn their own money, their standing in society is increasing.

However, deeply rooted-gender discrimination still exists in North Korea. One-quarter of the women surveyed believe that women’s rights can never truly be equal to men’s rights. This attitude highlights how sexist beliefs are deeply ingrained in the minds of many North Koreans, despite some economic progress for women. More needs to be done to change societal perceptions and ensure genuine equality for women in all aspects of life.

Widespread Sexual Abuse and Coercion

Alarmingly, 73% of respondents reported encountering cases of sexual abuse, coercion or manipulation in workplaces, the military, markets and detention centres. Colleagues and superiors demanded sexual favours or deceived women with promises of work opportunities or promotions.

Calls for Concrete Action

Daily NK announced these disturbing findings at a Women’s Rights conference on March 8, hosted by the Canadian Embassy in Seoul. The results are a wake-up call for the North Korean government to urgently address women’s rights, increase awareness and combat rampant sexual offences against women.

About Freelance writer

As a passionate freelance writer, I delve into the intricacies of human rights, work-life balance, and labour rights to illuminate the often overlooked aspects of our societal fabric. With a keen eye for detail and a commitment to social justice, I navigate the complexities of these crucial topics, aiming to foster awareness and inspire change.

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