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Uber provides free lifts to women voting first time in Saudi Arabia

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New Delhi: Uber, the online taxi service is offering free rides to women in Saudi Arabia as the nation sees the women voting first time in the elections.

Saudi Arabia, a conservative Islamic country has allowed women to vote and contest elections the first time in their history. Uber, in a bid to help the women participation in the ongoing election, decided to provide free lifts for all the women who are going to vote.

The women are also not allowed to drive in the nation or talk to a man.

This is a joint effort between US-based Uber and Al-Nahda Philanthropic Society for Women, a Saudi women’s empowerment group.

The campaign is a part of Nahda’s wider struggle for gender equality and rights for women in the country.

Saudi Arabia is the last country to allow women to vote except for the Vatican City now. This is a first step in the long struggle of the gender equality.

Almost 1000 candidates for the elections are women which prove that they were just waiting for the opportunity.  This initiative is a way to tell women that there will be a help if they needed it.

However, a number of women said that they wouldn’t use Uber rather they would go polling booths with their family members.

This election which are a milestone step for the women in the history of Saudi Arabia and the Middle east can be an even bigger thing if somehow any women candidate manages to win.

More women voices are likely to be heard if they get representation in the decision making through the electoral process.

Uber and Nahda are hoping that their initiative encourages more women to participate in this elections.

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Family Size Can Be Determined By Reproductive Rights: Study

To make freedom of choice a reality, the report urges countries to offer universal access to quality reproductive health care

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Reproductive Rights, abortion
A community health worker holds up contraceptives during a lecture on family planning at a reproductive health clinic run by an NGO in Tondo city, metro Manila. VOA

Family size is closely linked to reproductive rights, according to the State of World Population 2018 report.

The U.N. report says people in developed countries tend to have lower fertility rates because of greater access to family planning services, modern contraceptives and age-appropriate sex education.

The director of the U.N. Population Fund office in Geneva, Monica Ferro, says in places where reproductive rights are constrained, either due to lack of resources or government mandates, people have a limited ability to choose the size of their families.

reproductive rights
Google suspends Ireland’s Abortion Referendum Ads, VOA

“Many sub-Saharan African countries, for example, have fertility rates of four or more births per woman,” Ferro said. “At the other end of the spectrum, you have some eastern Asian and European countries with fewer than two births per women. In both cases, individuals face obstacles to the full realization of their reproductive rights.”

The world population is expected to increase by 2.5 billion by 2050, to nearly 10 billion people, with sub-Saharan Africa expected to contribute more than half of that growth.

Women in Africa must overcome many legal and social barriers to achieve control of their fertility, Ferro said.

reproductive rights
Women in Africa must overcome many legal and social barriers to achieve control of their fertility.

“Women may not have the access to medical services,” she told VOA. “They may not have the access to child care. They may not have access to all the institutional and social support that comes with being ready or being able to plan your fertility.”

Also Read: Brisbane, Australia Protests Against Plans To Decriminalise Abortion

To make freedom of choice a reality, the report urges countries to offer universal access to quality reproductive health care, including modern contraceptives and better education.

It also advocates for a change in men’s attitudes toward a woman’s right to choose the number, timing and spacing of children. (VOA)

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