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Shecession: The Downfall of Colombian Women During the Covid-19 Pandemic

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  • Ana Tribin
  • Karen García-Rojas
  • Paula Herrera-Idarraga
  • Leonardo Fabio Morales
  • Natalia Ramirez-Bustamante

Abstract

This article explores the short-term effects of the COVID-19 crisis on gender gaps in the Colombian labor market. Colombia offers an interesting case for analysis because, as with most countries in the Global South, its combination of formal and informal labor in the labor market complicates the pandemic’s aftermath. This analysis highlights the differences between men’s and women’s labor outcomes in terms of the effects of the crisis. Specifically, the study documents a phenomenon that the authors call a “female fall,” by which, in comparison to men, women lost status in the labor market. This article also shows a downgrade in the condition of women who remained employed via lower wages, especially in the informal sector. As a result of the pandemic, increasing numbers of women were relegated to domestic work. Finally, the article discusses how women’s burden of unpaid care increased.HIGHLIGHTSIn Colombia, COVID-19 hit women workers harder than men due to sectoral differences and domestic duties.Lockdown imposed a high caregiving burden that mostly fell on women.Women were more likely to drop out of the labor force to devote themselves to care work, reversing progress toward gender equality.Women were more vulnerable to precarious work conditions and lower wages.Ongoing recovery needs to better address the gendered impact of pandemic.

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  • Ana Tribin & Karen García-Rojas & Paula Herrera-Idarraga & Leonardo Fabio Morales & Natalia Ramirez-Bustamante, 2023. "Shecession: The Downfall of Colombian Women During the Covid-19 Pandemic," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 29(4), pages 158-193, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:femeco:v:29:y:2023:i:4:p:158-193
    DOI: 10.1080/13545701.2023.2230218
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    1. Ciaschi, Matías & Fajardo-Gonzalez, Johanna & Viollaz, Mariana, 2024. "Navigating Educational Disruptions: The Gender Divide in Parental Involvement and Children's Learning Outcomes," IZA Discussion Papers 16985, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).

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