Tuesday, June 17, 2014

The Current Post-Recession Status of Women

Diana Furchtgott-Roth explains:
Employment for women 16 years and older only reached pre-recession levels only in January 2014. Employment for prime-age women (25 to 54 years) is 2 million short of pre-recession levels. Their labor force participation rate declined from 76 percent before the recession to 74 percent today.
And Obama wants to make things worse:

[S]ome women face particular barriers to employment as they move in and out of the workforce in their role as family caregivers. They need more flexibility to participate in the workforce. But President Obama's new overtime rules, currently being drafted in the bowels of the Labor Department, would extend overtime rules to several million employees that businesses classify as executive or professional employees.

This would prevent employees from taking time off to make up for overtime work, making it more difficult for some women to work.

For those who believe that flexibility is not important to women in the workplace, look no further than the Yale Law Women website. Yale Law Women just announced its ninth list of Top Ten Family Friendly Firms. Few women at Yale Law School have children, but they are already planning ahead to be moms with flexible schedules. Their top firms are derived from a survey which "explores important family friendliness indicators such as the billable hour requirement, part-time and flex-time options, caregiver leave policies, and childcare availability."

Yale Law Women should tell this to Mr. Obama. In March, in the ornate East Room of the White House, the president said, "Overtime is a pretty simple idea: If you have to work more, you should get paid more." What if you want time off instead of more pay, just like the women at Yale Law School?

More pay for more time sounds good, but many workers are already paid salaries that reflect their hours worked...

Polls show that flexibility of work hours is especially important in the Hispanic community, not just for family reasons, but also to celebrate religious holidays.

Currently, any salaried worker making less than $455 per week, or $23,660 a year has to get overtime pay, a level established under Department of Labor regulations in 2004. The Department of Labor has not yet stated how high it will seek to push the weekly salary limit for guaranteed overtime, but it is expected to be a significant increase.

Overtime rules hurt women by reducing flexibility with their employer. Many women with children, particularly young mothers who cannot afford childcare, would prefer to have flexibility in their schedule rather than extra overtime pay.


  1. In other words, female workers aren't suffering enough. They need the administration to break their legs so it can hand them a crutch.

  2. Rather than relying on the imports from Cheap Labor, and the college debt scam, maybe women, and men, are figuring out new work arounds. Most women work in 'soft' jobs-- "consulting", non-profit, government so this is a positive trend.

    1. You mean more and more people do nothing useful - i.e. nothing other people would willingly pay for? Is that supposed to be positive?