Crisis of Democracy and a New Class in Georgia

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Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi state university, Faculty of social and political sciences
Gender equality can’t be achieved without women's economic strengthening and their equal involvement in economic activity. Economic empowerment of women is measured with their equal participation in the labor market and equal access to the resources. So, equal labor rights, as a precondition for equal participation in the labor market, are an essential component for the economic empowerment of women and gender equality. The neoliberal economic policy in the context of economic globalization is contributed to create a new class structure, that the British researcher Guy Standing called “Precariat”, which is characterized by new types of relationships and more and more instability in relation towards this class, while distributing wealth. Precariat is a new social class, whose representatives are forced to work in low-paid, unstable and temporary services, without any social insurance and even without maternity leave. Often, the representatives of the precariat class, are women who are forced to accept jobs like this. Neoliberalism is characterized with subordination, exploitation, and control towards women. The "new economy" discourse, which is idealizing "creative workers", often makes it possible to hide its’ “precariatizm”. Characteristics for the majority of jobs in global capitalism are: the precarious of women's work, fragmentation, low status and low payment accordingly. The techniques of neoliberal governments allow the “Precariat” to be permanent and continuous. For a long period of unemployment, in Georgia many women suffered with disqualification and were forced to move to the unregistered, self- employment field. Many of them have come out of the labor market, i.e. in the informal sector - "shadow economy", where they work without any safety and their rights are grossly violated. Families, who do not have the conditions to create a livelihood, especially in rural areas, to support their family and children are forced to move to large cities or abroad to find jobs, where they can’t meet the needs of the labor market and are under risk to be involved in various informal activities. In large cities of Georgia, legal rights of women, especially of those who are employed in cafes, bars, restaurants, shops and booths, are often violated and they have very difficult conditions at work. The main goal of our research is to study the current condition of women employed in the labor market of Georgia; How the existing national legislative framework helps the establishment of gender and social equality in the labor market; How Georgia's labor law protects employed women, in this case, the rights of women employed in our target group - service centers, and whether the national legislative framework guarantees their protection.
gender equality, precarious work, precariousness, the class of the precariat, women workers, neoliberal economic policies, გენდერული თანასწორობა, პრეკარიატული შრომა, პრეკარიატული კლასი, დასაქმებული ქალები, ნეოლიბერალური ეკონომიკური პოლიტიკა