The COVID-19 pandemic has uniquely impacted the economic livelihoods of women around the world. More women are unemployed today than at any time since the pandemic began.
I'm not going to paraphrase this article. Melinda writes it all beautiful. Here are the choicest exerts, the power points:
"Last year, the word “shecession” was coined to describe what was happening to the global economy. Women were nearly twice as likely as men to lose their jobs. Now, new data from the International Labor Organization (ILO) show that, based on current trends, the recovery is sexist, too. Men as a group have already regained all the jobs they lost, but women are still losing theirs. In fact, 2 million more women are expected to leave the workforce this year, adding to the 13 million in 2020."
"Gender equality is an economic necessity."
"The upshot is this: gender equality is an economic necessity. One of the main reasons economies were so fragile in the first place was that women were marginalized. And those economies will never bounce back if their leaders continue to marginalize women."
"The recession and the early trends of the recovery make the case for action perfectly clear: women face structural barriers that have made them more vulnerable to the pandemic’s impacts – and eliminating these barriers will jumpstart the recovery."
"For example, jobs that women tend to do more than men—restaurant server, flight attendant, hotel worker—were squeezed particularly hard by social distancing. Women already did about three quarters of the cleaning, cooking, child-rearing—the unpaid work that, according to economists, makes all paid work possible—and with schools closed and everyone staying closer to home, there’s more demand for caregiving than ever."
"At the same time, disruptions to health systems put important services like family planning and prenatal care out of reach for millions of women. Add it all up, and you see how various effects of the pandemic have conspired to rob women and girls of opportunity."
What can employers do?
More of the following:
- inrease women's employment
- opportunities for entrepreneurship
- family and child care services
- women's health services
- cash transfer programmes
"There are 225 COVID-19 task forces in 137 countries, but only 24% of the people serving on them are women. The only way to choose a different future is to guarantee that women are in the rooms where pivotal decisions get made."
The recession and the early trends of the recovery make the case for action perfectly clear: women face structural barriers that have made them more vulnerable to the pandemic’s impacts – and eliminating these barriers will jumpstart the recovery.