The consequences of any crisis are never gender-neutral, and usually women bear the brunt of it. With Coronavirus, the story is not very different.
Although research suggests that men are more likely to die from the virus, women are more impacted by the social and economic factors. More women have lost their livelihoods during the pandemic than men, and the numbers continue to rise, suggests a new report titled ‘COVID-19 and gender equality: Countering the regressive effects,’ published by McKinsey Global Institute (a US-based management consulting firm).
It states that while women make up almost two-fifths of the global labour force, they have suffered more than half of the total job losses from the crisis. Moreover, women are 1.8 times more vulnerable to job losses than men, at 5.7% versus 3.1% respectively. And that’s not all – the report estimates that 4.5% of women’s employment is at risk in the pandemic globally, as compared with 3.8% of men’s employment, based on the industries that men and women participate in.
Besides, COVID-19 and the ensuing lockdown measures have led to broader implications for gender inequality. Due to unanticipated disruptions in labour, and with the increasing burden of unpaid care at home, gender relations might shift at a societal scale.
The impacts are not just economic.