Glass ceiling has already been broken

Many Singapore women are top bankers, lawyers, doctors, civil servants, politicians and board directors. So it is perturbing to note the constant and persistent calls for gender equality ("To break glass ceilings, tackle family gender norms"; Nov 26).

The increase in the percentage of women directors from 8 per cent in 2012 to 9.7 per cent as of June indicates progress ("Call to get more women on S'pore boards"; Oct 6).

Just because the percentage is not growing as fast enough as some are expecting does not mean that women are being short-changed, bypassed and discriminated against, and that the glass ceiling has not been broken.

Not all qualified women are interested in being board directors. They may have other priorities and are happy with their lot. Even some qualified men shun board seats.

Singapore women are among the most fortunate in the world. Even when it comes to bringing up children, the current generation of Singapore men are very hands-on and proactive. In fact, the wives expect it, believing that they have fulfilled their part of the deal once the baby is delivered.

So the so-called family norms and expectations that society still supposedly holds towards women are more perceived than real.

We must refrain from forcing the issue and succumb to reverse rationalisation in order to push the agenda. We also need to accept that the glass ceiling has already been broken.

It is important to understand that progress has been made and it will get better.

Lawrence Loh Kiah Muan