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Longstanding inequities in access to quality jobs and affordable care, along with uneven caregiving responsibilities, create unique challenges for young women of color during this prolonged pandemic recession. Young women (aged 16 to 24) were more likely to lose their job than young men and workers of other age groups in the initial months of the pandemic recession, largely due to their concentration in industries and occupations that have been hit the hardest by the economic downturn.
In 2020, women earned less than men in almost all occupations, whether they worked in predominantly male, predominantly female, or more integrated occupations. In the lowest paid of the largest 20 occupations for women, Maids and Housekeepers ($503 per week), women are nine-in-ten workers (and face a wage gap of 10.6 percent); in the highest paid of the largest 20 occupations for men, Chief Executives ($2,402 per week), women are fewer than one-in-three workers (and face a wage gap of 24.4 percent).
Postsecondary attainment is widely recognized as key to accessing living-wage careers—in addition to fulfilling workforce demands and elevating the United States’ standing on the world stage. While much of the work to increase attainment rates has recognized the role of reengaging adults who have some college credit, but no degree or certificate, less attention has been paid to the salience of parenthood in adults’ postsecondary experiences.
HERE TO STAY: BLACK, LATINA, AND AFRO-LATINA WOMEN IN CONSTRUCTION TRADES APPRENTICESHIPS AND EMPLOYMENT
The skilled construction trades provide opportunities to build careers that are both challenging and fulfilling, pay a family sustaining wage with benefits, and can be accessed through ‘learn as you earn’ apprenticeships. Apprenticeships are particularly common in the unionized sector of the construction industry, where contractors and unions jointly run and fund apprenticeship programs.
In 2019, the median earnings of Asian American and Pacific Islander women for a year of full-time work were just 84.6 percent of White non-Hispanic men’s, and just 73.3 percent of the median annual earnings of Asian American and Pacific Islander men.2 While Asian American and Pacific Islander women had the highest median annual earnings for full-time year-round women of the largest racial and ethnic groups in the United States, $55,0003 compared to $47,299 for all women workers,4 this hides large differences in the labor market experiences for different groups of women.
As lowest paid women lost most jobs, the gender wage gap for full-time workers shrank for all women and men, and by race & ethnicity. The gender wage gap in weekly earnings for full-time workers in the United States narrowed between 2019 and 2020, from 19.5 percent in 2019 (a gender earnings ratio of 81.5%) to 18.7 percent in 2020 (a gender earnings ratio of 82.3%)
A new National Survey by IWPR finds in first 100 days and beyond, affordable, high-quality healthcare, getting the economic recession under control, and job creation are top priorities for women for the new Administration and Congress. Women have been most affected by the COVID-incited economic downturn
The Equal Pay Act, passed over a half century ago, prohibits sex-based wage discrimination (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission 2020). But the gender pay gap remains substantial: full-time, year-round women workers earn 18 percent less than their male counterparts (Hegewisch and Mariano 2020). A lack of knowledge about who makes what within organizations contributes to this continuing disparity.
Women and the COVID-19 Pandemic: Five Charts and a Table Tracking the 2020 Shecession by Race and Gender
DOWNLOAD REPORT The COVID-19 pandemic has been devastating [...]