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Image: Klaus Nielsen
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Prof. Darja Zaviršek,
Chair of the Dept. of Social Justice and Inclusion University of Ljubljana; President of the East European Sub-regional Association of the Schools of Social Work, EEsrASSW of the IASSW; IASSW board member

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David McNabb, PhD
IASSW Board Member; Senior Lecturer - Social Practice, Unitec Institute of Technology | Te Whare Wānanga o Wairaka, Auckland, New Zealand

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Professor Laura Guzmán-Stein, PhD
is Professor Emeritus of Social Work, University of Costa Rica.

Issue 24: The Shadow Pandemic

The global crises caused by the Covid-19 pandemic exacerbated global inequalities. Women's rights and gender inequalities are once again at the centre of attention. The global IASSW survey on women’s human rights issues and social work education (2018-2020) showed that some of the serious gender inequalities are related to domestic violence and violence against women, poverty and women's reproductive rights.

The corona crises deepened these social problems; domestic violence increased during the various lockdowns; female unemployment is on the rise. Women took over additional care work and home education in the countries where the schools and other services closed down. At the same time, it is mainly women who work at the forefront of the health crises as health workers. In many countries, most people who got infected and died of Covid-19 lived in nursing homes, and women were most of them.

The special edition of the spring 2021 issue Social Dialogue Magazine focuses on the evidence, personal stories, and reflective articles on gender inequalities during the Covid-19 pandemic. It also examines the constructive responses, resistance, and advocacy against gender inequalities during the corona crises. Addressing gender inequality intersects with other inequalities and invites men to be allies in building a more just society. Some countries are better than others at dealing with the corona crises and countries with women in leadership are doing better in terms of upholding the well-being of all people. What are the characteristics of women's political leadership in times of crisis such as the pandemic and how can positive stories about women in political leadership become role models for male politicians? Social work perspectives on these issues will contribute to knowledge for how we can best live in these times.

It was a pleasure working together to compile this edition of IASSW's Social Dialogue.