Fall is often when people decide to embark on a new professional challenge after having let the idea percolate over the summer. After a year-and-a-half of the pandemic, employment uncertainties, and working conditions turned upside down, but also opportunities of learning and resilience, fall 2021 will be particularly tumultuous in this aspect.
In this newsletter, we delve into the topic of employment and women. The relationship between the labour market and women is different from what it is for men; the pandemic affected it in a completely different way, and the situation is slow to improve.
Jobs held mostly by women are not paid as well as jobs held predominantly by men. Women are in the majority when it comes to minimum wage job sectors or sectors with precarious or part-time employment conditions. Jobs in the care sector, such as nursing, teaching, early childhood education and social work, are at the front lines of the pandemic. Employees in this sector are overworked, exhausted and many leave their jobs. Working conditions are slow to improve and are not enough to contain the hemorrhage.
Mothers of families might have benefited from the flexibility of working hours made possible by remote work, but because of this “opportunity,” it is now, even more than ever, hard for them to achieve a work-life balance, as they need to simultaneously ensure their jobs and be present for their children, caring for them and their education. When it’s time to go back to a hybrid form of working at their physical place of work, they will also have to deal with the double standard, which places more value on work done on site than remotely and the weight of informal discussions in decision-making. In choosing to work remotely rather than on-site, because of the flexibility it offers, women risk being penalized in their professional career trajectory.
The Passport to Employment: More relevant than ever
Our employability services are there to support all women navigating this difficult employment market and we are constantly updating and evolving our offerings. Updates are being made to the Passport to Employment program, a key component of the YWCA Plan for the Future. Synonymous with financial autonomy, personal accomplishment and intellectual fulfilment, a job is the door to a better quality of life for women—as long as this door remains open to them.
Visit YWCA Montreal's Plan for the future website