How the COVID-19 pandemic has influenced women’s employment and their health: an inquiry into their lived experiences
Veitch, Alanna C.
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The COVID-19 pandemic accentuated employment vulnerabilities among women working in the Canadian services sector. Research shows how poverty, precarious employment, and crisis are gendered and racialized. Few studies, however, critically explore women’s employment in Canada and how neoliberalism drives inequality. A Feminist political economy framework was used to examine the lived experiences of ten racialized women who work in the services sector in the GTA. Comparative thematic analysis of online interviews revealed intensified impoverishment, persisting inequalities, intersectional oppression, a deterioration of women’s mental health, and the inadequacy of existing public policies to address the cycle of neoliberal austerity and poor health experienced by racialized women in Canada. This research makes explicit how gender, race, and social class interact and shape women’s health. Governments must strengthen public provisions to address longstanding intersectional inequalities.