Moms Struggle to Return to Work as California Reopens from COVID

Wendy al-Mukdad talks to her son, Yazan, as he immediately eats prior to his baseball exercise in San Bruno. Picture by Dai Sugano, Bay Region Information Team

Ahead of the pandemic, Patricia Gutierrez would fall her 8-yr-aged autistic son off at school in San Jose and her 4-12 months-outdated son off at day care each early morning. Soon after her mom, who suffers from Alzheimer’s, was picked up and shuttled to a senior center, Gutierrez would generate to work as a licensed vocational nurse at a college for unique demands students.

But as COVID-19 scenarios began to distribute throughout California in March and corporations started shutting down, her son’s college, the senior center, and working day care all shut. Gutierrez misplaced her position and signed up for unemployment. With two young ones and a declining mom at property, getting other work was not an possibility.

“There was no way,” she mentioned.

Now, as California opens back again up, persons are rejoining the workforce. But for moms like Gutierrez, economic restoration may well not kick in until eventually faculty returns in August. By May possibly, employment among the doing work women of all ages devoid of young children experienced just about returned to pre-pandemic levels, although moms with college-aged kids lagged extra than 6% behind, according to an independent analysis by Misty L. Heggeness, a principal economist at the U.S. Census Bureau.

There is a related imbalance concerning guys and gals. Gema Zamarro, senior economist at the USC Dornsife Heart for Economic and Social Study, identified that by November women dwelling with a husband or wife were being twice as likely to be unemployed as men residing with a husband or wife.