Expert Voices: Redressing Gender Imbalances, One Panel (or “Manel”) at a Time

The energy sector in Mexico is known for its gender imbalance. While women are underrepresented in board of directors in all sectors, the energy sector is worse, with only 3% female participation.

In order to support women’s advancement to the upper echelons of the industry, a group of prominent women in the sector have formed an advocacy organization called Voz Experta. The organization aims to advocate for its members to balance out expert panels composed only of men, or “manels.”

Women Aren’t “Opting Out” of the Work Force. They’re Being Forced Out

Crushed by the load of caregiving, women are leaving workplaces in droves, and the wage gap is an important motivator.

“A more accurate description of ‘opting out’ is in fact women being forced out of work—forced out by companies that never really wanted us there anyway, forced out by managers who are not amenable to being flexible, forced out by partners who are not willing to pick up their part of the load at home, and forced out by constantly being ground down through silencing, erasure and plain old everyday sexism in our paid work.”

Accommodating Pregnant Workers is a Matter of Reproductive, Economic and Racial Justice

It’s still the case that too many women of color are fired or
forced out when they request a modest workplace accommodation to protect their health. Longer term, pregnancy discrimination pushes women deeper into poverty, jeopardizing the health and economic well-being of our families.

Last month, the House passed the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act with overwhelming bipartisan support. Now, we must call on the Senate to take up this bill without delay.