Numerous obstacles are recognized including the failure to apply laws, lack of knowledge about rights, the need to review existing laws, the uneven sharing of family responsibilities, traditional attitudes towards the role of women and men, and the socio-economic environment in many countries, particularly in relation to the recent lack of economic growth, the debt crisis and the impact of structural adjustment programmes.
Article 20 of the [European Social Charter] (Revised) (Strasbourg 1996) provides: With a view to ensuring the effective exercise of the right to equal opportunities and equal treatment in matters of employment and occupation without discrimination on the grounds of sex, the Parties undertake to recognise that right and to take appropriate measures to ensure or promote its application in the following fields: (a) access to employment, protection against dismissal and occupational reintegration; (b) vocational guidance, training, retraining and rehabilitation; (c) terms of employment and working conditions, including remuneration; and (d) career development, including promotion.
2. Assuring employment equality is perhaps desirable, but disrupting traditional labour division customs is not. For example, traditional Gypsy occupations have been divided by sex. Men are the artisans while women offer services such as fortune telling and selling what the men produce. It is the women who bring in the money, and the women who are largely responsible for managing it. Cultural deterioration of the Eastern European Gypsies is partly ascribed to their forced employment in areas that have been very foreign to both genders.