This recession has been coined as the “he-cession” by some media pundits due to the rise of unemployment among men. Oh, so if this recession is affecting men more than usual, this means we can ignore the unemployed women, right?
Um, no. After all, it’s not rocket science — in a recession, people of both sexes are going to lose jobs. In some months, like January to February of 2009, unemployment has increased more for women (8.1 percent) than men (6.6 percent). In fact, February’s 6.7 percent unemployment rate for women was the highest in 23 years.
The point is that neither gender is in great shape right now when it comes to finding and retaining work. With rising unemployment across the board, more people are applying for unemployment insurance (UI). And I can tell you, when it comes to UI programs, the system leaves a lot to be desired. According to a Center for American Progress report, under current law only about 37 percent of unemployed workers actually collect benefits at all, with low-wage, part-time, and female workers particularly harmed by outdated state eligibility rules. …
This isn’t a new problem either — what is new is that we have an opportunity, thanks to the economic recovery package, to fix it. But only if we hold some feet to the fire in state legislatures, and that’s where you come in.
by NOW President Kim Gandy: Below The Belt: Carrot or Stick?