International Women's Day began in 1908 when 15,000 working women in New York City marched for better pay, shorter hours and voting rights. Today, 70 percent of the world's poor are women. And more than half the women in the world live in countries that have made no progress towards gender equality in recent years. So the struggle continues. To discover where we're at today, check out the 2008 Gender Equity Index at Social Watch, here.
In 2005, the Fourth World Conference on Women in Bejing issued the following statement.
Women contribute significantly to economic life everywhere. However, women are largely excluded from economic decision-making. They face low wages, poor working conditions and limited employment and professional opportunities…[and] their unpaid work is not measured… and not valued in national accounts. (source)
Pretty much sums it up.