The future of labour is female

Their participation is not a surprise; women are most of the staff of many vital but invisible sectors in a neoliberal society. They care, educate, support, and clear up the mess. Without these basic services France would be paralysed. Who would take care of the elderly and babies?

Workers BushTelegraph

Cleaners and carers fight together in French protests

JPEG - 459.9 kb
Get that fuel price down: yellow vest protestor on a bridge over the N70 on 23 November 2018 near Montceau-les-Mines, central France
Romain Lafabregue · AFP · Getty

Women
have put on yellow vests and joined the demonstrations, women who
double-shift domestically and at work to keep the creaking social state
going for modest wages, as nurses, home care assistants, nursery workers
and cleaners, usually out of sight, in the background.

Their participation is not a surprise; women are most of the staff of many vital but invisible sectors in a neoliberal society. They care, educate, support, and clear up the mess. Without these basic services France would be paralysed. Who would take care of the elderly and babies? Not strike-breaking managers or the forces of law and order; police training does not cover spoon-feeding. Such tasks shifted over the last century…

View original post 1,300 more words

10 thoughts on “The future of labour is female

  1. “Women have put on yellow vests and joined the demonstrations, women who
    double-shift domestically and at work to keep the creaking social state
    going for modest wages, as nurses, home care assistants, nursery workers
    and cleaners, usually out of sight, in the background.”

    And just as many men doing equally important jobs and often more dangerous and longer hours. This isn’t a goddamn competition. Each gender is crushed by the system in various ways – I wish we could just focus on what we have in common rather than what sets us apart.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think the issue here for the author (and for me personally) is that women have a virtual monopoly on the unpaid labor in the home caring for children, the sick and the elderly. This unpaid labor is still virtually invisible, despite the fact that capitalism would collapse if women ceased to do this unpaid work. Women also still hold the majority of minimum wage jobs in the caring professions, as nurses aids and personal carers. With more and more women forced into work, we see (at least I do as a psychiatrist) in which women have no choice but to work 60-80 hours weeks. And many are breaking down, with skyrocketing rates of depression and self harm.

      The other major problem for me is child poverty. The main reason 25% of children grow up in poverty is because their mother’s are poor. And as a child and adolescent psychiatrist, I can assure you that a child raised in poverty faces a very bleak future – they have a much lower chance of going to university or entering full time employment and a much higher chance of facing chronic illness (both mental and physical) illness as adults.

      Based on personal and professional experience, there is no question in my mind that our continuing acceptance of female and child poverty affects quality of life for us all, in terms of growing rates of alcohol and drug addiction, child abuse and domestic violence. Until we address child poverty and women’s income levels, these problems are only going to get worse.

      Like

  2. If she is at work, who will get me my chips and beer while I am watching the telly? If she were here now, I would have her bring me my phone so that I could call somebody.

    Liked by 1 person

    • “. . . women are most of the staff of many vital but invisible sectors in a neoliberal society. They care, educate, support, and clear up the mess. ..”
      So women are ‘most’ of the staff and I suppose the rest are men, are they not? Why do men not get any mention? I do not understand. What does ‘most’ mean? 80%, 90%? So 10% or 20% may be men. Or is it more like 5% or less? I have no idea. But there must be some men like this. And women right at the top, they do get a mention, don’t they? Even though they are still only a tiny minority!

      MK says: “. . . I wish we could just focus on what we have in common rather than what sets us apart.”
      I very much wish this too!! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Sorry, I went now to the original post in which it says “. . . But this disparate group which, including male workers, accounts for over 25% of the workforce . . . . . ” I think this means that male workers in this group suffer about as much as women workers!

        I copy here this particular paragraph and refer especially to the last sentence where it is stressed how highly these workers are regarded by the public:

        “There is a big divide between a nurse in a state hospital and an undocumented personal carer in a private home. But this disparate group which, including male workers, accounts for over 25% of the workforce, contributes to the production of the same collective resource and shares common features. The nature of personal services, care, social work and education means these jobs are not only indispensable but cannot be offshored or easily automated, as they require extensive human contact and/or individual attention. All these sectors are suffering under austerity; in schools and old people’s homes, working conditions are deteriorating and grievances worsening. The public regards these workers highly, as they can imagine life without heavy industry but not without hospitals, schools, nurseries and retirement homes.”

        It says that “the nature of personal services, care, social work and education means these jobs are not only indispensable but cannot be offshored or easily automated, as they require extensive human contact and/or individual attention.” Society should really start thinking about it how indispensable these jobs are, and this does apply as much to Australia as it does to France!

        Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.