Thursday 8 December 2016

It's a working mum's world - nurse, cook, maid, teacher ...

Lorraine Courtney

Published 24/05/2016 | 02:30

'The problem is that our current understanding of ‘working mother’ is that of babysitter, teacher, nurse, cook and maid all rolled into one frazzled fembot. And what about our understanding of dads who work? Well, they’re just men.' Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto
'The problem is that our current understanding of ‘working mother’ is that of babysitter, teacher, nurse, cook and maid all rolled into one frazzled fembot. And what about our understanding of dads who work? Well, they’re just men.' Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto

A new Glassdoor survey, which compared equality measures in European countries and the US, found the gender pay gap is wider in Ireland than anywhere else in the study. No surprise there, given our troublesome combination of paltry paternal leave, lack of flexi-jobs and steep childcare costs.

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The study shows the pay difference between Irish men and women who have at least one child and those with no children is 31 percentage points. To put this into perspective, there's just a three-point difference for Belgium, Spain and Italy.

We all know that women fall down when they take time off to have a baby, and then need a more flexible schedule to look after it because childcare is still primarily the mother's responsibility. Lots of professional women then either leave the workforce, choose to go part-time or avoid looking for promotions, while their male colleagues soar ahead.

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