Session 4:

 Family, Gender and Social policy

In this session 5 papers were presented which are, respectively, (1) “Exploring the Role of Faith in Influencing What ‘Justice’ Means for Victims/Survivors of Gender-based Violence and for Those Working to Support Them Within the United Kingdom Context Nadia Aghtaie, Natasha Mulvihill”.(2) “Welfare Policy and Single Motherhood in Iran and Denmark: A Cross-National Analysis of Discourse and Practice. Hamideh Addelyan Rasi, Jørgen Elm Larsen” (3) ” An Overview of Family Welfare Policies in Iran” Maryam  Sharifian Sani.  Maliheh Arshi, .Marzieh Takaffoli. (4) ” Policies Towards Eradication of Women’s Poverty: The Case of Eastern Part of Turkey”. Omer CAHA. In the following paragraphs, some briefs and some significant points of each presentation are mentioned.

The First Presentation:

Researchers are working on a project to explore how 'justice' (in its wider sense) is understood, sought, and experienced by victims/survivors of gender-based violence and by practitioners working to support. According to the authors “we are particularly interested in how inequalities and identities intersect with how individuals perceive and seek justice”. This paper presented the findings from one qualitative strand of this work.The researchers said that how justice was mediated through religious based arbitration and how faith might influence personal and institutional conceptions of justice and affected decision-making. First, they considered the role of Muslim Sharia Councils in arbitrating cases of intimate partner violence and presented the findings of interviews with both victims/survivors who had used this mechanism and with practitioners involved in their leadership and administration. Second, the authors considered the experiences of victims/survivors, and those working with victims/survivors, within the Jewish, Catholic and Anglican churches. The researchers said “We are interested in the strengths and limitations of faith-based responses and whether they offer an alternative vocabulary to articulate justice which could be of general value or indeed, whether victims/survivors feel that the role of faith within justice mechanisms should be resisted or carefully delimited. We are also interested in the intersection of gender with culture/religion, rights and community, and notions such as honors. We are mindful of the risks of homogenizing small samples according to, in this case, religious affiliation and indeed assuming that the experience and perceptions of justice for those who identify with a particular faith may be substantially different from those who do not. We reflect on these and other issues in our presentation”.

The Second Presentation :

According to authors, welfare policies among single mothers in Iran and Denmark were discussed in this study. The authors considered unskilled and unemployed single mothers as vulnerable groups in the society regarding family poverty, gender and workplace inequalities, and the prevalence of experiencing domestic violence. There was a gap between single mothers’ needs and the resources available to meet their needs, and this gap increased health problems and decreased healthcare utilization. Low income was an essential problem among single mothers. There were different barriers for single mothers in finding and keeping a job, less educated, work experiences, self-esteem, motivation, poor health and children care problems were extremely affected in single mothers’ working situation. Integrating work and family is one of their problems.

In Denmark Single mother had a higher unemployment rate compared to mothers in two parent family as well as lone fathers. and there were some complex problems with these mothers too.

 The author said that  there were a double discrimination in Iran, unequal wages, the weakness of  women health situation and etc.

The third one:

 According to the findings of this study, in Iran there are several factors which have been and continue to be major obstacles to defining comprehensive family welfare policies. These include the lack of precise and operational definitions of the family and family welfare, emphasis on the individual rather than the family-centered approach, the ambiguous place of the family in policies, and the presence of conflicting policies. It should also be noted that there is a real need for consensus to be reached among policy makers as it was evident during this study that given the ambiguous state of Iran's welfare system, there exist conflicting views in the experts community. In addition, as emphasized by Islam, the family institution in Iran is important and highly valued, which is one of the strengths that can facilitate the removing of the obstacles in achieving family welfare. Also, experts suggestions in different conceptual, policy making and executive areas can lead to more effective family welfare policy in Iran.

 In the following we would mention some of Problems and barriers in Iran: unclear family concept/ multiple variety and dependency of different dimensions and areas of family.

The author were mentioned some problems related to family welfare policy  unclear position of family at the macro level of policy making and etc.

The last one

The researcher has examined the influence of government policies on women’s poverty. According to the results of the investigation, governmental programs have been successful in the area of education, health care services, social assistance and solidarity.The target determined by the government in respect to the schooling of female students have successfully been attained. Particularly, the dormitory opportunities given to the female students by the government has played a positive role in that success. But, despite a number of promotions, the employment of women has not been attained as much as targeted by the government. This is one of the reasons behind the women's poverty in the region.

The author was mentioned some of government plans: Heating aid, social welfare for widowed women. Birth allowance for first child. orphan assistance, Education assistance, aid to elders, and some care assistances for pregnant women  and etc.) .