Lack of childcare impedes women hoping to re-enter workforce

Women hoping to re-enter the workforce in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic have had difficulty finding affordable, reliable health care, keeping them at home, advocates note.

By

State News

February 3, 2022 - 10:00 AM

Wendy Doyle, president and CEO of United WE, says during a virtual news conference that a new task force would use results from the survey and upcoming town halls across the state to provide leadership and recommendations for how to address issues relating to women in the workforce. Photo by Screen grab via Kansas Reflector

TOPEKA — New research from a women’s economic and civic advancement group and the University of Kansas draws connections between rising unemployment among women, difficulty accessing child care and the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Status of Women in Kansas report released Wednesday found the impacts of COVID-19 are disproportionately affecting women. Caregiving responsibilities, the closure of in-person schools and working from home have had a significant impact on women’s employment, report findings indicate.

For example, in the quarter before COVID-19, women accounted for 32% of unemployment claims, but after March 2020, women averaged 46% of the claims. The unemployment rate for women peaked at just over 16% in April 2020.

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