According to a new report released by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the gender gap in wages increases drastically after a woman has a child.
The report looked at the economic standing of women in 34 of the developed member country and found that on average all women earn 16% less than men. Without children, the gap between men and women was only 7%. However, after a couple has even one child, the wage gap increases to a staggering 22%.
The OECD reported that the gender gap begins before children leave school - early educational disparities between girls who tend to be stronger in reading skills than boys but weaker in math tend to funnel women away from scientific fields that feature higher wages. After women have entered the workforce, limited child care options and motherhood demands can prevent women from moving further in their careers.
In addition, the OECD found that reducing the gender gap would lead to stronger economies and an increase in GDP. In his remarks on the report in the LA Times, Secretary General of the OECD said "Closing the gender gap must be a central part of any strategy to create more sustainable economies and inclusive societies."
Media Resources: LA Times 12/17/12; Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development 12/17/12; Wall Street Journal 12/17/12
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .