A surprising number of women are responding to lockdowns in an unanticipated way: trading their jobs for more time at home. In September 2020 alone, more than 800,000 women left the workforce. Their numbers swell to 2 million now.
There is little indication most of these women are leaving or downsizing their work under duress, or at the expense of keeping food on the table. Rather, many of these women are responding to something they feel in their bones: the need for stability in the face of crisis, especially for their children. Women are responding to the pandemic by reordering their lives to a saner pace, one more centered on home.
This trend is widely bemoaned as a loss of talent in the public square, and a setback in gender equality. A woman should be at her place on the job just like a man, shoulder to the wheel, a good worker bee, or she’s let everyone down. For