COVID-19 and women

COVID-19 AND ITS ECONOMIC TOLL ON WOMEN


Earlier last month, the UNDP released that it estimated COVID 19 will push 96 million people into extreme poverty by 2021. Although this number varies-- the World Bank estimated that 150 Million people would be pushed to extreme poverty by next year-- one cannot deny that this pandemic is having (and will have) catastrophic consequences for humanity as a whole.


COVID-19 and its effects on women's careers.


COVID-19 has had an enormous economic toll in the lives of women. Women are suffering the brunt of childcare, threats to employment, health coverage, work-life balance, and access to reproductive health care.


According to Lean In and McKinsey’s Women in The Workplace report, women’s jobs are almost two times more vulnerable to this crisis than men’s jobs. In fact, the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR), noted that women have been hit hardest by job losses in the pandemic, for instance in the education sector women held 77% of jobs pre-pandemic, yet now they amount for 83% of job losses in that sector.


Moreover, women make up the majority of workers in industries that have been incredibly affected (if not devastated) by COVID-19 closures (for instance restaurants, daycare centers, the hospitality industry, beauty salons). Job losses have been particularly prevalent amongst Black and Latinx women.


As Lean In and McKinsey’s Women in The Workplace report also highlighted, COVID-19 has had a disproportionate impact on female entrepreneurship. Several academics observed that most policy initiatives that have been implemented to protect economies during COVID-19 seem to only target large established corporations. This coupled with the fact that women (mostly) face the challenge of balancing their work with a myriad of new responsibilities (including household responsibilities, child care) means that new ventures are extremely vulnerable to this crisis.