Stock image courtesy of USU Extension, St. George News
ST. GEORGE — In an effort to better understand the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on women in the workplace, researchers with the Utah Women & Leadership Project, in conjunction with Utah State University Extension, are conducting an extensive, in-depth study.
According to a press release from USU Extension, national research has found that while women and men have both struggled to find and keep employment during the COVID-19 pandemic, women have been more negatively impacted than men.
It has been especially difficult for women of color and those in jobs often held by women, including front-line positions, waitresses, hairdressers, cosmetologists, bartenders, retail, sales and childcare workers. Many such positions have been scaled back or eliminated due to the pandemic, the research shows
As part of the USU study, all Utah women age 20 and older who are either currently employed – or unemployed due to the pandemic – are invited to take a survey, which will take 20-30 minutes to complete.
“In several states, most unemployment claims filed in the first few weeks of the pandemic were from women, and Utah was not an exception,” said Susan Madsen, primary researcher for the study, founding director of the Utah Women & Leadership Project and Karen Huntsman Endowed Professor of Leadership in USU’s Huntsman School of Business. “Women filed 58.4% of the unemployment claims by the week that ended April 11, 2020, and new research shows the U.S. economy lost 140,000 jobs in December alone, with all of them being held by women.”
Madsen said researchers hope to get well over 2,000 participants for the survey, with the data collection and analysis phase taking place through January 2021. Research briefs with recommendations will be released beginning in April.
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