The vulnerability of flood affected women and girls has increased.
People living in far off areas of Pakistan face serious problems of food insecurity in the wake of price hike and economic depression in the open market. They maintain their household budget on daily living. It gives them little space to keep cushion for emergency situations such as natural disasters. Provision of eatable goods is taken as priority, hence other expenditure on family's healthcare and education are forfeited to kitchen needs.
In most parts of the country where education infrastructure exists, people prefer boys' education over girls'.
It is linked to their material calculations of market economy which provides better employment opportunities to male skilled workers than for highly skilled women.
Price hike affects women the most because of their traditional dependence on male family members. Illiteracy keeps the poor women in social, political and economic shackles. Maternal healthcare is compromised, women are subject to physical and emotional domestic violence, girls are sold and early marriages are arranged to settle financial issues. Financial concerns overtake cultural values of respect and dignity.
Children especially girls suffer from malnutrition, and other physical and emotional problems. Food price hike also provokes gender conflicts resulting in excessive ratio of divorce, honour killing, domestic violence and sexual harassment.
In a society faced with multiple economic, social and security related challenges, current phenomenon of unchecked price rise has demoralized the struggling flood affectees. It has made it even more difficult to keep resilient against unprecedented devastation of property and life. The vulnerability of flood affected women and girls has increased manifold, which calls for remedial actions “on war footings” to prevent the situation from getting worse.