"I get angry about things, then go on and work." - Toni Morrison, author, (1931-2019)
By JULIA ANDERSON
Women have lost more jobs than men during the coronavirus pandemic. This is a serious financial setback for women, for household income and for the U.S economy.
The reasons are clear -- women work in female dominated sectors -- retailing, education and health care. Many more own their own businesses that have been closed for months.
Self-employment at beauty salons, spas, restaurants, bakeries, daycare centers and retail shops has given women the flexibility to make money and manage the kids. Work at schools, clinics and hospitals offered the same home-work dynamics.
But pandemic schools closures meant the kids came home. Someone had to be there for them, helping with online school, social distancing "play-dates" and meals. A double-whammy for women.
More of the same. The Wall Street Journal reports that many women won’t be back working at 100 percent for a long time – a year or two. Continued virus infections, layoffs and workplace closures coupled with school closures that have kids at home have created big challenges for women, especially single moms.
This has implications for the economy: High unemployment, reduced family income, less consumer spending. When will many of these jobs come back? We don’t know.
Federal stimulus programs have helped, extending unemployment benefits for self-employed workers has helped. But this aid expires in July and there are doubts about what programs should be continued and how they should be continued.
Meanwhile, the longer women remain out of the workforce the harder it could be to return. Skills atrophy or at least some employers may think that, said the Journal report.
What can women do?
Advocate for yourself with your employer if you are off the job or working from home. Stay in touch, either way. Ask for a schedule that works for you from home. Negotiate to set work-from-home expectations --- kids, hours, job performance. . Advocate for returning to the workplace even part-time.
Reset your personal and professional success goals. What one small step can you take to reach a work goal, today? What tiny victory have you achieved in the past week? What ways can you go easy on yourself during this difficult time?
Learn to live on a single-income: Cut expenses, develop an expense budget, avoid high-cost debt, talk about the stress and look for new options.
click here for the WSJ story.
Conclusion: Women have lost a lot of jobs in the pandemic. Getting back to those jobs will take time…. Maybe a year or two. It is going to be a marathon, not a 6k race.
Pacing is everything. But women will come out of this stronger, smarter and determined to move ahead personally, and financially.
I meet women all the time who face job and money transitions and who want to do them right. It’s about building confidence and taking charge of the future. This is your money. No one cares more than you do!
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