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Mothers returning to work face double whammy

Women are facing a double whammy when they return to work after having children - losing out in terms of pay and career status when they take on part-time jobs.

Four reports have shown that women face downgrading, with their talents, skills and experience being wasted by employers.

And hourly earnings for women in part-time work are 26% lower than for those in full-time work.

Teaching and nursing were some of the best careers for supporting move to part-time working, but in other situations, researchers found that a third of female corporate managers moved down the career ladder after starting a family, while women managers in retail, catering and hairdressing suffered particularly badly.

The research, which was published in the February issue of the Economic Journal, says that the pay gap between part-time and full-time work has been getting wider in recent years, since part-time work is mostly found in low-paid occupations.

Another of the reports points out that there is a bigger difference between the part-time and full-time of women in the UK than anywhere else in Europe.

UNISON said that the research confirms the findings of the Women and Work Commission on the impact of caring responsibilities on women's equality in the workplace. National women's officer Sharon Greene said: "This shows us the scale of the problem facing women.

"Women face real questions over re-starting work after having a child, knowing that they are likely to be demoted in terms of their career - as well as facing the prospect of less pay. It represents a glass ceiling in more ways than one.

"Clearly, this has an impact on the fight to win equal pay - but it's also a serious waste of talent and skills, and it indicates an undervaluing of mothers and motherhood."

And Ms Greene noted: "The UK needs to get serious about equality for women - not just in terms of pay, but in terms of career structure and work-life balance too."

Article provided by Unison - visit www.unison.org

Posted by, Asif Yusuf

 

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