We end up mentioning similar news about once a year, so here’s this year’s ‘Dutch women are being held back/are holding themselves back’ article:
Women in the Netherlands are at a disadvantage on the job market and if they were more equal, like some of the better neighbouring countries, it would bring in the state some 114 billion euro, according to a report published in newspaper Het Financiële Dagblad. If men and women were completely equal, this figure would jump up to 221 billion.
With a few exceptions around me, even many progressive women (often with rich partners husbands) don’t realise that this part-time work makes them vulnerable in the long run. And on the flip side, no woman regardless on what side of the argument they fall is going to care one iota whether the gross domestic profit (GDP) is affected by them working part-time or not, so that’s not a great motivation. Decent childcare, less guilt trips and accepting that the status quo doesn’t work for many women would probably help.
Women are said to still do a lot of unpaid labour as carers, which surely could be said about most, if not all women in Western countries. As well, Dutch women still choose a lot of healthcare and teaching jobs that are traditionally women’s job, and overall pay less.
According to the 2017 report OECD report on gender equality, “almost 60% of the employed women in the Netherlands are in paid employment for fewer than 30 hours per week […] At the median, the gender pay gap for full-time workers in the Netherlands is 14%, just below the OECD average. As they are often better educated than young men, young women (age 25-29) in full-time employment often earn more than men of the same age. However, gender gaps reverse in favour of men when children enter the household – when Dutch women often start to work part-time.”
Paid father’s leave and not guilt-tripping fathers/partners for taking care of their own children, which is often still seen as baby sitting, should definitely be addressed.