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Table 1 Key definitions

From: Time to address gender discrimination and inequality in the health workforce

Gender discrimination Any distinction, exclusion, or restriction made on the basis of socially constructed gender roles and norms that prevents a person from enjoying full human rights [23].
Discrimination in employment and occupation Practices that place individuals in a subordinate or disadvantaged position in the workplace or labour market because of characteristics (race, religion, sex, political opinion, national extraction, social origin, or other attribute) that bear no relation to the person’s competencies or the inherent requirements of the job [24].
Basis for sex or gender discrimination Distinctions made on the basis of biological characteristics and functions that distinguish men and women (for example, height, weight) or on the basis of social differences between men and women (for example, marital status, family situation, maternity).a
Bias An inclination or prejudice for or against one person or group, especially in a way considered to be unfair, that often results in discrimination [25].
Equal opportunity and nondiscrimination The offering of employment, pay, or promotion to all, without discrimination as to sex, race, color, disability, and so forth [26].
Gender equality in the workforce A condition where women and men can enter the health occupation of their choice, develop the requisite skills and knowledge, be fairly paid, enjoy fair and safe working conditions, and advance in a career, without reference to gender; implies that workplaces are structured to integrate family and work to reflect the value of caregiving for women and men [27].
  1. aWomen are most commonly affected by sex discrimination; however, prohibition of discrimination based on sex does not address all the types of inequalities women face in the workforce [28].