September 2023 - Summary report of country-wide women’s consultations Background Methodology
18 September 2023
Since the Taliban (referred to as the de facto authorities) takeover in August 2021, they have introduced more than 50 decrees that directly curtail the rights and dignity of women.1 It is clear that the Taliban’s vision for Afghanistan founded on the structural denial of women’s rights and well-being. [...] 4 Examples of decrees directly impacting the right of women to work include: the ban on women working for non-governmental organizations (NGOs) (December 2022) and its extension to the United Nations (April 2023); the ban on beauty salons (July 2023); and the requirement for women health workers to bring a mahram (male family member) to their place of work (January 2023). [...] The resulting stress has led to extreme coping mechanisms in families and communities, including child labour, the sale of children, begging, and forced, early and child marriages, including to soldiers of the de facto authorities, who are reportedly more likely to have paid work and can afford to buy one or more wives.7 The early marriage of girls comes with long-term negative 6 United Nations. [...] The share of women reporting “good” or “full” influence at home, with relatives, in the community, and at provincial and national levels declined on average by 6 percentage points in the period from April to June 2023, compared to the period from January to March 2023.9 Women repeatedly stressed the impact that their loss of income has on family relationships, including by increasing gender-based. [...] The degree of exclusion was similar among different women – including displaced and non-displaced, and rural and urban women – showing that the impact of restrictions has been comprehensive and disempowering.