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Women and Work. Women’s Paid &Unpaid Work. Women are about 42\% of the paid labor force in developed regions of the world Around the world, almost 70\% of working-age women are employed Women do the majority of household tasks and child care worldwide. Women’s Unpaid Work.

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women s paid unpaid work
Women’s Paid &Unpaid Work
  • Women are about 42% of the paid labor force in developed regions of the world
  • Around the world, almost 70% of working-age women are employed
  • Women do the majority of household tasks and child care worldwide
child care responsibilities
Child care responsibilities
  • Mothers spend nearly twice as many hours providing child care at home as fathers do
  • Women are the primary custodians of child/family health
women s paid work
Women’s paid work
  • In some cases, women are making inroads into occupations traditionally held by men
  • Women’s share of professional and managerial jobs has increased
  • At a much slower rate, women have moved into blue-collar occupations
low wage workers
Low-wage workers
  • Retail sales, child care, fast food, restaurant work, CNA’s, education assistants, domestic labor
  • 60% of low-wage workers are women
  • 33% of women vs. 20% of men work in low-wage jobs
  • African American and Latino workers are over-represented in low-wage jobs
equity and discrimination
Equity and Discrimination
  • Women’s work tends to be undervalued
  • Job applications or resumés are most likely to trigger prejudiced evaluations
  • Women’s successes may be attributed to luck rather than skill
  • Undervaluing of women’s work is one cause of the gender pay gap
gender pay gap
Gender Pay Gap
  • Women earn 77% of what men earn
  • Effect persists when controlling for experience, education, industry, and hours worked
  • Larger gap for minority and disabled women
    • African American—61%
    • Latina—52%
gender pay gap1
Gender Pay Gap
  • Women tend to work in lower-paying fields (nursing, teaching) than men do
  • Traditionally male-dominated fields (medicine, law, science) pay more
the glass ceiling
The Glass Ceiling
  • Women hold less than ¼ of senior management positions globally
  • Philippines and Russia at the top—over 40%
  • Lowest is Japan—7%
  • US is 22nd at 20%
biological realities
Biological Realities
  • Men cannot bear children or lactate
  • Leads to biological argument against women earning as much as men
  • “Married with children” is a disadvantage for women but an advantage for men
firm specific skills argument
Firm-specific skills argument
  • Men are given greater responsibility because they are seen as more committed to their jobs—less likely to leave for family obligations
  • Hence they develop skills which enhance their value to the firm where they work
  • This in turn leads to better pay and promotions and is what drives pay disparities
motherhood as a source of discrimination against women
Motherhood as a Source of Discrimination against Women
  • Many employers are reluctant to pay pregnancy-related benefits
  • The US is one of a very few countries that makes no provision for paid maternity leave
  • The Family and Medical Leave Act mandates up to 12 weeks of leave (often unpaid) for certain workers
donnicia venters case
Donnicia Venters case
  • Firing a woman because she wants to use a breast pump at work is not sex discrimination
  • Lactation “is not pregnancy, childbirth or a related medical condition”
discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation
Discrimination on the Basis of Sexual Orientation
  • Legalin most workplaces in the United States
  • Such discrimination is illegal in Canada
  • Lesbian and bisexual women earn 13-15% less than heterosexual women—more likely to be working in low-paying, female-dominated occupations
women s working conditions
Women’s Working Conditions
  • Jobs dominated by women are often difficult and dangerous
  • For example, risk of serious injury is greater for a nursing aide than for a coal miner or steel mill worker
  • Factory work can involve long hours, uncomfortable conditions, and high pressure to produce quickly
some remedies
Some Remedies
  • Reducing gender stereotypes
  • Stereotyping most likely when
    • The person is a “token” in the work environment
    • Evaluation criteria are not explicit
    • Organizational norms and policies tolerate or reinforce gender stereotypes
some remedies cont
Some Remedies (cont.)
  • Pay equity legislation: equal pay for equivalent work
  • Comparable worth: equal pay for work of equal value
  • Affirmative action: strategies to increase the proportion of women and minorities hired, particularly in jobs where they have been traditionally excluded
paycheck fairness act
Paycheck Fairness Act
  • Employers would be required to prove that a pay disparity is based on a “bona fide factor other than sex,” such as education, training, or experience
  • Passed the US House but was defeated in the US Senate in 2010
activity
Activity
  • Do women need laws such as Affirmative Action and the Paycheck Fairness Act to achieve wage equity with men?
  • Does this sort of legislation diminish the achievements of women and minorities?
activity1
Activity
  • Does the focus on “leveling the playing field” foster competitive "masculine” values to the detriment of “feminine” values?
  • Should women try to “make it in a man’s world” or create alternative structures?
activity2
Activity
  • Does the reproductive role of women justify increased protection for women in the workplace?
  • Should women be afforded extra benefits (maternity leave) because of biological differences, or is this discriminatory?
references
References
  • Childcare gap between men and women narrows. (2011, June 16).CBS News. Retrieved March 10, 2012, from http://www.cbsnews.com/2100-201_162-20071588.html
  • Fitzpatrick, L. (2010, April 20). Equal pay and the gender gap: Men still outearn women - TIME. Time. Retrieved from http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1983185,00.html
  • Gibbard Cook, S. (2004). Mothers in the faculty pipeline - Women in higher education. Women in Higher Education, 13(8). Retrieved from http://www.wihe.com/printArticle.jsp?id=18562
  • New U.S. Women in Business Statistics Released by Catalyst - Women on Business :: Women on Business. (n.d.). Retrieved March 11, 2012, from http://www.womenonbusiness.com/new-us-women-in-business-statistics-released-by-catalyst/
  • Rampell, C. (2011, March 10). Women lead in unpaid work. New York Times. Retrieved from http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/03/10/women-lead-in-unpaid-work/
  • TradePost: Equal Pay for Equal Work. (n.d.). Retrieved March 10, 2012, from http://tradepost.selectfamily.com/index.cfm/2011/4/14/Equal-Pay-for-Equal-Work
  • Unequal Harm: Racial Disparities in the Employment Consequences of Minimum Wage Increases | EPI Study. (n.d.). Retrieved March 10, 2012, from http://epionline.org/study_detail.cfm?sid=137
  • Vermeulen, F. (2011, February 28). Wage differences between men and women - sexist or functional? Forbes. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/sites/freekvermeulen/2011/02/28/wage-differences-between-men-and-women-sexist-or-functional/
  • Work Isn’t Working. (n.d.).Women Employed. Retrieved March 10, 2012, from http://www.womenemployed.org/index.php?id=19
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