As too many employers have experienced firsthand, one of the most startling employment setbacks linked to the COVID-19 pandemic is its effect on diversity. A disproportionate number of women left the workforce in 2020, and this troubling trend continues.
Caregiving is a primary factor influencing women to leave their jobs, because of the time, attention and energy it requires. While this responsibility isn't a new burden, COVID-19 health concerns have greatly expanded its focus from elderly or ailing family members to school-age children who learn remotely, or otherwise spend more time at home. October 2020 saw 2.2 million fewer women in the labor pool compared to one year prior.1