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Monday, March 21, 2011

Women Working - Take 2

I love when my boyfriend finds subjects for me to write about here! We are often looking at research where women are getting paid less than men (we still earn $0.80 on the dollar that men do), but there are some jobs where women are statistically getting paid more. Some are rather surprising!

  • females working in construction jobs (laborers of supervisors), maintenance painters, aircraft and vehicle mechanics earn more than men even though they only hold 3% of these jobs. This article speculates that women in these jobs are less likely to be associated with negative gender associations.
  • Don't want to fix cars? Female teaching assistants, occupational therapists, dietitians, nutritionists and life, physical, social science and health technicians also make more on average. Perhaps this is because more women go into these jobs and are customers in the first place?
  • I liked this statistic because I occasionally work as a busser at my job (though we get tips from the servers, so this statistic doesn't actually help me much). Women who work as dining room attendants (I'm assuming this is the politically correct term for bussers) and bartender helpers (barbacks, which sadly, in the restaurant I work in, are only guys) make 111% more than men. Also, female food preparation workers and servers earn more as well. Helloooo tips!
  • Bakers - this article speculated that it might have to do with the flexibility of women to work odd hours.
This was interesting information, however most of these jobs are lower level, where the income potential isn't great anyway, even if women are making more. I'd rather have a job with a pension plan and health insurance than making 111% more as a waitress any day of the week.

Also, not to be the complete Debbie-Downer, but are women getting more work in some these positions (specifically in the restaurant business etc.) because of negative sexual gender stereotypes? Female servers, bartenders, etc. are trained and know to dress and sometimes act a certain way (suggestively) in order to get more tips. 

Samantha Jones, in Sex and the City, says "Women are allowed to use every possible advantage to get to the top." But what advantages are actually sexual exploitation? Are these long term successes for women or short-lived victories that are going to blow up in our pretty little faces?

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