COVID-19 has been forcing women out of the workforce in huge numbers, and girl after girl tells the identical story. Their husbands earn more money than they do—that 82 cents rearing its head—so it simply is sensible for them to stop and care for teenagers now at residence a lot of the time, lots of whom need assistance with their distant studying.
That is why for a lot of girl, 82 cents on the greenback is an formidable purpose—as a result of they offer up years of earnings for unpaid care work. For these employees who’ve office retirement plans, males have a median of $131,000 and girls common solely $88,000. Girls additionally lose Social Safety advantages due to time away from paid work. So the ladies leaving the paid workforce now, although they’re largely working extraordinarily onerous at residence, will face financial fallout for the remainder of their lives.
President-elect Joe Biden does have a plan to assist the scenario considerably, primarily by giving Social Safety work credit score for unpaid care work. That’s an vital plan, and one Congress ought to move as a part of COVID-19 aid. However it’s not sufficient. We have to get to a society the place girls are paid equally, in order that complete “he makes extra so it is sensible for me to stop” argument dies. We’d like inexpensive baby care. We’d like our tradition to worth girls’s work. As soon as once more, the coronavirus is each exposing and exacerbating current inequalities and making already susceptible individuals extra susceptible.