New York, Sep 1 (IANS) Three-fourths of Americans think discrimination against women continues to be an issue today, even when the country has witnessed the historic nomination of Hillary Clinton as the first woman candidate for the US Presidential bid.
However, an equal number of Americans also say that discrimination for many women has decreased in the past 25 years, reveals a national poll conducted by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.
The survey revealed that while 75 per cent find men and women are equally good at being political leaders, 53 per cent think women have fewer opportunities in politics than men.
Thus, American citizens are divided on whether Clinton’s gender is an advantage, a hindrance or neither for her election prospects this fall.
Men are more inclined to say that her gender is a benefit to her campaign, whereas women are more likely to say it is a barrier, the researchers said.
“The impact of the country’s first female nominee is perceived differently across the electorate including how Hillary Clinton’s gender will impact her chances of being elected and what the long-term effects will be on gender discrimination,” said Trevor Tompson, Director of the AP-NORC Center — a US-based social science research organisation.
Seven in 10 revealed that the historic nature of Clinton’s candidacy has no bearing on their own vote choice this year.
While nearly 20 per cent said that the opportunity to elect the first woman President makes them more inclined to vote for Clinton in November, about 10 per cent said that it makes them less likely to vote for her.
Further, 49 per cent of Americans think it would help the economy if the upper management of companies were made up of equal numbers of men and women.
Six in 10 do not expect a Clinton Administration to have any effect on the level of discrimination against women, while a quarter anticipate a reduction in the amount of discrimination women would face if Clinton is elected.
While 48 per cent think it would make no difference, a mere two per cent say it would be bad for the economy.
However, in reality, just four per cent of Fortune 500 CEOs are women and the workplace is perceived as an uneven playing field for women, the researchers said.
In addition, three in 10 men reported of having been discriminated against in some way at work because of their gender.
More than half of Americans think women have fewer opportunities for job advancement and six in 10 say they are at a disadvantage when it comes to salaries.
In fact, nearly half of the women revealed that they had experienced at least some type of job-related discrimination – getting a job, receiving equal pay, or being appreciated and promoted at work — because of their gender, the study concluded.