An man writes “Free Women, Respect” on the sand, at La Concha beach amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in San Sebastian, Spain, May 30, 2020. REUTERS/Vincent West

THE NEUTRAL ZONE

More evidence is showing that women are disproportionately affected by job losses due to coronavirus across the globe. One new report estimates that 31 million out of a total of 44 million job losses globally will be those that belonged to women. Advocates fear that could mean a backslide in progress made in workplace equality for women over the past 50 years.

A historic unemployment rate of 15.5 percent for U.S. women has some experts dubbing this economic downturn a “she-session,” especially as more economists suggest that initially temporary layoffs could turn permanent. Economists say that women “over-represent” in service-sector jobs that were most impacted by the pandemic, especially women of color. 

The pandemic has similarly challenged working women, as more women are single parents and many report they have taken on a larger share of housework and childcare during lockdowns. By the end of April, female academics were submitting 50 percent fewer academic papers compared to their male peers.

MEDIA PERSPECTIVE

Protecting and Promoting Women’s Rights Is Key to Defeating the Coronavirus at Home and Abroad – Center for American Progress – 5/29/2020
Given these realities and the United States’ traditional dependence on women to provide care, it shouldn’t take a woman leader to realize the importance of prioritizing women’s rights and using a gender lens in policy solutions. As the United Nations recently concluded, “Women will be the hardest hit by this pandemic but they will also be the backbone of recovery in communities.”

COVID-19: Gender Equality Advocate? – The American Lawyer – 5/29/2020
The coronavirus as an agent for gender equality? That’s probably not what you’re hearing, but some women contend that the lockdown is actually leveling the playing field in the workplace—and they’re crowing about it. Not only has COVID-19 thrown a monkey wrench at all those favorite male activities, but it’s forcing men and women to interact with each other on a much more equal basis at work.

Coronavirus layoffs have not been equal. Here are the workers that have been hit hardest by pandemic job losses. – Business Insider – 5/30/2020
The jump in women’s unemployment is due to the industries that were hit first and hardest by job losses in service sectors including leisure and hospitality and healthcare, according to a May report by Heather Boushey and Carmen Sanchez Cumming of the Washington Center for Equitable Growth. 

Working mothers interrupted more often than fathers in lockdown – study – The Guardian – 5/27/2020
Working mothers have been able to do only one hour of uninterrupted paid work for every three hours done by men during lockdown, according to a study that exposes the work imbalance between men and women. 

INFLUENCER PERSPECTIVE

Women of Influence on  Twitter, 5/30/2020: These 3 Alberta-based women entrepreneurs share how the pandemic has affected their businesses and how they plan to overcome it

ESSENCE on Twitter, 5/30/2020:  Black women across America are feeling the far-reaching impact of COVID-19 to varying degrees according to ESSENCE’s Impact of COVID-19 on Black Women. Read more from the first comprehensive look into how COVID-19 has disrupted Black women’s lives: 

The Chronicle of Higher Education on Twitter, 5/30/2020:  It’s crucial for college decision-makers to think about the long-term effects of Covid-19 on faculty productivity — especially for women.

IFC on Twitter, 5/30/2020:  Women perform more than 75% of total hours of unpaid care work globally. #COVID19 has exacerbated this issue in many countries. What can the public & private sectors do to support the care needs of working parents? Blog by @HansPeterLankes on @CFR_WFP:

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