Gender gap ‘off the charts’ in current recession

Missing is much of the coverage of the nation’s financial meltdown are the kitchen table economics, or the gender-based effects of job loss, wage and benefits disparity and stagnant credit markets that historically have disproportionally affected women.

As Zach Carter at The Media Consortium Economic News Ladder notes that’s not necessarily the case in this deepening recession.

GRITtv’s Laura Flanders interviews Heather Boushey, senior economist at the Center for American Progress, about how the unemployment crisis is impacting families based on gender. Typically women are much more likely than men to dropout of the labor force when they lose their jobs, but in the current recession, record numbers of men are being laid off.

That’s creating not just a loss of income, since women still face a significant pay gap, but serious schisms when men find themselves unable to perform the role in the family they’re accustomed to playing. It’s also sowing seeds for political unrest: when people find themselves out of a job thanks to structural economic forces beyond their control and facing problems at home as a result of being laid off, it generates a lot of anger.

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Wendy Norris

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