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Lecture 15

Lecture 15 21st Century Families, Diana Worts Chapter 21: “Like a Family – reproductive work in a co-operative setting,” Belinda Leach Chapter 30: “Transforming Rural livelihoods: gender, work, and restructuring in three Ontario communities”.docx

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Sandra Colavecchia

rd Sociology 2U06: Sociology of the Family Nov. 3 2011 st Lecture 15: 21 Century Families, Diana Worts Chapter 21: “Like a Family – reproductive work in a co- operative setting,” Belinda Leach Chapter 30: “Transforming Rural livelihoods: gender, work, and restructuring in three Ontario communities” Recap: Pre-21 Century: - Economic decline beginning in 70s, continuing for decades - Period of affluence was over - Jobs in manufacturing disappearing - Family-wage jobs declining - Women enter the labour market (service sector expands) o Pink-collared ghetto - Service sector jobs are two-tiered o Good jobs: higher level corporate jobs o Bad jobs: entry level jobs, usually parttime  Usually: Non-unionized, Little job security, Fewer hours, Unskilled so can be easily replaced - Wages o Growth in wages between 1940-1970: 250% increase in average real wages o Growth during 1980s and 1990s: 2-3% o During period of 1980-present men’s average wages declined while women’s increased st 21 Century Families (1990s to present): - “New Economy” o Knowledge based (need degree): Credentialism  More education required even for entry level  Don’t have enough good jobs for university grads  Education jobs gap  Increased influence of credentialism works in women’s favour  Reduces gender-based discrimination as employers hire on basis of education credentials  Works to the advantage of other historically marginalized groups in this same way o Lots more competition for jobs o Declining wages o Multiple careers over a lifetime o Economic restructuring and downsizing  Middle management is vulnerable  Unionized jobs in manufacturing sector vulnerable as well  i.e. When plants/factories close o Increase in  Contract work  Becoming new norm  Drawbacks: no benefits, no job security after term is up,  Non-standard employment  More diversity in employment schedules – no longer only Mon-Fri 5-9 o Part time, rotating shifts, night shifts etc  Both positive and negative o POS: greater flexibility in juggling responsibilities o NEG: less financially rewarding, sometimes really want to work fulltime but can only get part-time so have to work multiple part-time jobs  Self-employment  May seem like a positive change (no boss, living the dream) but have to consider fact that self-employed people earn less on average than those who work for companies o No benefits! o Tend to not have employees, do all the work themselves o Work longer hours  Gov’t cutbacks to social spending hurt families  Increased child poverty  Neg impact on health care system  Gov’t assistant levels declining o More strict eligibility criteria to receive social services (welfare, disability checks) o Women’s position in the labour market:  Advances  Greater opportunities  Explicit discrimination against women is no longer tolerated  Affirmative action etc. in the public sector  Attempts to reduce inequalities  Gender gap in earnings is shrinking  Parental leave changed from 6 months to 1 year  Many companies trying to implement family-friendly policies to attract workers o i.e. in-work daycare  More job sharing o i.e. two people sharing one full-time job  Flex time, working from home  Persistent inequalities  Making career tradeoffs – suppression of salaries  Occupational sex segregation is still big even though more women are entering male-dominated careers/jobs o Men in male-dominated, women in female-dominated fields  Glass ceiling (women don’t advance to senior levels in many fields, i.e. climbing the corporate ladder – hit this glass ceiling which they can’t advance beyond) o Glass escalator for men  When working in female dominated fields they advance better than women  When decide to have kids, being a mom has negative repercussions in terms of their careers  Informal/subtle discrimination o i.e. uncomfortable sexual harassment o Employers prefer men if cannot afford to pay maternity leave  Inadequate social support
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