Speakers have said though women have been contributing to social development and welfare from their respective positions, they still face discrimination and harassment in the workplace.
They shared this remark at a webinar jointly organised by Bangladesh Youth Leadership Center (BYLC), Manusher Jonno Foundation and the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO).
Celebrating the achievements of women on a single day is meaningless when women's safety cannot be ensured on a regular basis, speakers said.
They added that organisations should establish committees to address their female employees' needs and issues.
Rina Akter, a former sex-worker-turned-rights-activist for sex workers – who was recognised under BBC's 100 Women 2020 – explained that things are even worse for street sex workers.
"Most street sex workers were left without work during the beginning of the pandemic," she said.
"They are not eligible for voter IDs, and thus cannot own a house. Social stigma makes it impossible for them to even apply for regular jobs. They, too, are women but when we talk about ensuring women's rights, their issues and concerns are never taken into consideration," she continued.
Gender equality cannot be ensured if the rights of transgender women are not recognised, said Lamea Tanjin Tanha, the 21-year-old founder of TransEnd.
"Trans women are still seen with suspicion in our society. They are excluded from health, education and other basic rights. If we are to ensure an inclusive society, we need to make sure that trans people are given the same privileges, the same access to facilities that the rest of the society enjoys," she added.
Esrat Karim Eve, founder of AMAL Foundation, reiterated the sentiment, adding, "The goal should be to create an environment where women feel secure about their safety and can reach their full potential without fear of external or internal threats."