Because the recession has laid off more men than women (75% of jobs lost were men’s jobs, in arenas largely staffed by men like manufacturing and construction…), women by default are about to become 50% of the paid workforce for the first time. Not exactly an advance, since we’ve made the gain while standing still. Time Magazine and Ms, following the lead of Maria Shriver’s A Woman’s Nation Changes Everything report, have both taken this as an occasion to examine gender and workplace issues–always a good thing if it can move us along further in our discussion of how to make the workplace fairer.
Here’s a link to a discussion of some of these issues I was part of on Houston PBS earlier this week.
In reality, women have always been 50% of the workforce. So far hitting 50% of the paid workforce has only been the occasion to remind us that we’re the underpaid 50% — where before we were just the unpaid 50%. Will that evidence be enough to get change moving?