On 14 April 2009, the United Nations Human Rights Council released the Saudi Arabia Addendum to the Report of the Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women. The Addendum indicates that although there have been modest reforms during the last two decades, there are still serious discriminatory practices occurring in Saudi Arabia.
One area that has seen improvement is the accessibility of education for girls and women, which has resulted in higher literacy rates for Saudi Arabian women. However, there remains a widespread lack of autonomy for women in Saudi Arabian society. The number of women participating in the workforce is low, and women are generally excluded from decision-making roles.
The Addendum also notes that although the issue of violence against women has received increased attention in Saudi Arabia, meaningful action is still required to effectively combat this problem.
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Compiled from: Saudi Arabia Addendum to the Report of the Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women, UN Human Rights Council (14 April 2009); Saudi Arabia - UN Special Rapporteur Violence Against Women - Mission, Women's UN Report Network (WUNRN) (9 May 2009).