The European Society of Organ Transplantation is dedicated to achieve excellence in the care of patients in need for organ transplant and those who received an organ transplant. Providing top-class professional education and promoting policies for equitable access to transplantation are key points to pursuing our mission. This vision stands on firm principles of equal rights to access safe healthcare, education and leadership positions, and freedom of opinion.
It is deeply concerning that these basic human rights are still being denied to girls and women. The current threats to women’s rights in Iran and Afghanistan, with deliberate attacks on their rights to education and freedom to self-determination, is the highly visible tip of the iceberg of the discrimination and oppression that continue to exist on a daily basis in all countries.
While condemning the violent restrictions of women’s rights, on this Women’s day, ESOT cannot avoid addressing the challenge of the systemic barriers that, at different levels, prevent women from entirely participating and thriving in science and academia at our doorstep. Achieving equity and diversity in this context is not only a matter of social justice but also critical for advancing scientific knowledge and innovation. Efforts must be made to address bias and discrimination, create inclusive environments, and provide mentorship and support to empower women to succeed and lead. Implicit biases, as well as bullying behaviours, are stigmas that prevent many women from achieving a deserved position or accomplishing a fulfilling job in many of our hospitals, universities, and scientific organisations.
While it is important that we listen to the voices of those women who are fighting for their rights and support them, we must work together to promote inclusiveness, equity and diversity on a daily basis in our environments. By empowering women, we can create a more equitable and prosperous society for all.