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The terms and conditions of employment, the key to equality in the home

A study of the Chair for women's entrepreneurship at Sciences Po Paris shows that the containment has not been so unfavorable to women. Decryption by Anne Bori

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The terms and conditions of employment, the key to equality in the home

A study of the Chair for women's entrepreneurship at Sciences Po Paris shows that the containment has not been so unfavorable to women. Decryption by Anne Boring.

The health crisis has spurred fear of a setback on the progress made in recent years in favour of equality between women and men, whether the distribution of domestic work or of the participation of women in the labour market. The Chair for entrepreneurship of women in Sciences Po has conducted a survey in partnership with IPSOS, to assess the impact of the confinement on equality between women and men at home. The results of this study, undertaken just before the déconfinement, from 4 to 8 may, from a sample of 1 000 people active representative of the French population, shows the contrasting effects of the confinement on equality between women and men within households.

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If before the confinementles women say they are in general less satisfied than men the distribution of tasks within the household (average of 6.7 for women, compared with 7.7 for men on a scale of 0 to 10), nearly 28 % of women in couples report an increase in their level of satisfaction with respect to the distribution of tasks during the containment, compared to 21% who reported a decrease. Even more surprising, 30% of women in couples with children also report an increase in their level of satisfaction, compared with 24% who reported a decrease. For the vast majority of women, their level of satisfaction with the division of household tasks has remained stable. Thus, there are situations which are widely shared, and in all cases, no sign of a massive degradation.

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women who reported being the most satisfied with the distribution for the containment compared to before are those whose spouse was found confined, either by not working more, either by tele-working. The highest increase in the average satisfaction of the allocation of tasks to women corresponds to the situation where both members of a couple are found in telework.

These data suggest that men have somewhat increased their contribution to domestic tasks when they were "assigned" to the home. The men in telework with their joint itself in telework were more likely to report an increase in mental workload for the containment (36% of men compared with 31% of women).

women who are more mobilized by young children

However, the women continued to provide the bulk of the tasks related to the education and care of children during confinement. Women with children under the age of 10 years have reported an increase of 85% of the time daily devoted to their offspring (3.3 hours to 6.1 hours), compared to an increase of only 43% declared by men (3.3 hours to 4.7 hours).

In our sample, women are found to spend more time with the young children, in part because they were more not to work during the confinement : 36% of women, compared with 29% of men, have remained at home without any activity. The men have worked more on the outside during the period : 37% of men vs. 23% women, have continued to exercise their profession exclusively outside the home.

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women were also less likely to work full-time : 46% vs. 57% for men. These data do not allow us, unfortunately, not distinguish between the reasons for which women have worked less. However, it is likely that they were more likely to benefit from the device activity partial during the confinement for the care of the children, in a context of closure of childcare facilities (data disaggregated by sex concerning the activity and partial stop work for childcare are not yet available).

A spouse at home, it is better for the women working at home

The containment has generated a wide variety of situations, making generalizations difficult. If the conditions of the job (time constraints, face-to-face or remote work) have largely determined the distribution of tasks during the confinement, the burden on women, especially women with young children, has increased during this period, making it very difficult conciliation between family life and professional activity.

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The results of our survey indicate, however, how the distribution of domestic work depends on the conditions of employment. It would seem that telework can thus be to the advantage of women, when they have children, and that their spouse (for a tv) also works. Nevertheless, the burden for the family continues to weigh more heavily on their shoulders. And thatgirl that is the situation, their perception of the distribution of household tasks does not change : they still have the impression of doing more than their companion (2/3 for them, 1/3 for him), while he himself is persuaded to do almost as much !

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