Why are Polish women disappearing from the labor market? Experts point to several reasons

The discussion on equal treatment of women and men in the labor market has been going on for years. In Europe, it is one of the fundamental areas of EU law. The documents containing these principles are ratified by many countries, including Poland.

Nevertheless, in many organizations around the world, there are differences in the treatment of women and men. Extract from the World Bank report “Gender and economic opportunities in Poland: are women the losers of the transformation?” shows that Polish legislation guarantees equal treatment of women and men in terms of access to work, training and professional promotion, as well as in terms of employment conditions.

However, it has been noted that differences in treatment between women and men may result from the traditional perception of the role of women. Furthermore, the report’s findings indicate that women are far worse off in terms of income levels, pensions and opportunities for career advancement.

The report was published in 2004 and it seems that the situation of women in the labor market has improved since then. However, it is still noticed that the gender of the employee influences the amount of compensation, and stereotypes about women in the workplace are doing well.

The female labor force participation rate for the EU is 71.9%. In Poland, it is slightly lower, reaching 67.9%. There is one conclusion – Polish women are relatively inactive professionally. This has an impact, first of all, on the country’s economy, as well as on the household budget.

The report “Improving the situation of women in employment” published by the Lewiatan Confederation indicates that the reason may be patriarchy, which has influenced the perception of the role of women in society. In addition, the worst economic situation of women was also mentioned, consisting of receiving a lower salary than men. It was found that, therefore, it leads to the consolidation of the stereotypical perception of the fair sex in the family.

In addition, the inefficiency of the childcare system for children up to the age of three may be the cause of the low professional activity of Polish women, which means that the time of the mother’s return to work is postponed. The family-friendly social system was mentioned as another reason.

The author of the report admits that the economic activity of Polish women is increasing with economic development, but this is still happening too slowly.

Mariusz Zielonka, the author of the report, pointed out that the level of professional activity clearly differentiates the place of residence. It is in cities that women are much more active and this may result from the evolution of the family model.

“The transition from the traditional model to the partnership model is one of the factors thanks to which women living in large cities can enjoy relatively high professional activity rates. Another element strongly influencing this state of affairs is the availability of public early childhood education and care structures in small towns and villages, or to be more precise, the absence of it.The last element is proximity, in the sense of distance , closest relatives, which is able to help women in caring for children to a great extent “- emphasizes Zielonka.

The report indicates that in recent years, it is women in large cities who have increased their professional activity. Moreover, it was noticed that the worst performers in the Polish labor market were women from small towns and that they were overtaken by women living in the countryside.

It turns out that the passivity of women in the labor market is largely caused by the lowering of the retirement age and social transfers such as, for example, 500+.

In addition, many women do not seek employment because of household chores. It should be noted that it is influenced, among other things, by low access to childcare facilities for children up to the age of three. Perks like 500+ have been noted to encourage women to stay home. It is estimated that around 100,000 people disappeared from the labor market during the first year of operation. women.

The author of the report noted that the situation of women in the labor market could be improved, among other things, by more male care for children. The pandemic has shown that women are more often responsible for care, especially when illness prevents children from going to school.


See also:

Labor market: Poland lacks 125,000 jobs

The Poles limit their professional activity. They take care of children and parents

How much does a traffic controller make and why is the industry so unequal?

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