- In an effort to bring women back into the workforce following the recession, Indeed and Luminary announced their creation of the Indeed Luminary Fellowship, which will provide 150 participants with "access to ongoing education, incremental support for job placement, coaching and mentoring, leadership training, content and community, professional networks, guidance, and exposure," according to the announcement.
- At least half of the fellowships will be offered to women of color, the announcement said. The program was created partly in response to continued headlines about the impact of the pandemic on women, including a National Women’s Law Center statistic showing that women have lost over 5.4 million net jobs since the pandemic began.
- "Investing in women is a key factor for the recovery of our economy and supporting vulnerable populations, particularly women of color," Luminary founder and CEO Cate Luzio said in a statement. "But women who have been impacted by COVID-19, either voluntarily or involuntarily leaving the workforce, need more than financial support. They need access."
The pandemic impacted working women in multiple ways. Women, especially women of color, faced "disproportionately devastating" levels of job loss at the onset of the pandemic, due in part to their overrepresentation in industries that bore the brunt of layoffs, according to a report by the Institute for Women's Policy Research published in April 2020.
Women also shouldered much of the childcare burden placed on families after care centers and schools shuttered during lockdowns. Women, according to a September survey by Cleo, lose nearly 50% more time compared to men while 61% of women said they felt responsible for the majority of caregiving in their relationship compared to 26% of men.
Even adjustments to the pandemic made by companies have left some women out. Black and Latina women disproportionately lack access to jobs that allow workers to work remotely, a February report by WerkLabs revealed.
But there are some actions employers can take to help, experts told HR Dive, as seen in efforts taken by companies like Indeed and Luminary. Allowing women an on-ramp to return to work and supporting sponsorship programs that encourage women’s voices to be heard even during times of remote meetings and a lack of visibility for some workers can help ensure women remain in the workforce, experts said.