6 January 2023
WOMBA Director, Alison Green, writes in People Management, the most read and visited HR media brand in the UK, about how working dads have become the pioneers of gender equality.
As more fathers challenge the status quo of paternity leave policies in a post-pandemic world, they are inadvertently driving change, says Alison.
Covid was a big blow for gender equality. It significantly increased the burden of unpaid care held by women and reinforced traditional gender roles and stereotypes, such as men being the breadwinners and women the primary carers.
The disproportionate impact on women ricocheted through the workplace too, whether that was through furlough, redundancy or the impossible task of working, parenting and homeschooling. The effect on women was so great, economists dubbed it a ‘shecession’ – an event that threatens to set back decades of progress on gender equality.
This all makes for dismal reading. Now, with a cost of living crisis and eye-watering childcare costs continuing to exacerbate existing inequalities, the concern is not that progress on gender equality has halted, but that progress is sliding backwards.
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