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Region’s working mothers report struggle to balance WFH, domestic responsibilities

WORKING MOTHERS across the region continue to face challenges adapting to the pandemic even as most workers overall grow more accustomed to remote work arrangements, professional networking site LinkedIn said.

The study accompanying the LinkedIn Opportunity Index 2021 found that nearly five in 10 working mothers in the Asia Pacific reported difficulty balancing working from home with their roles as mothers.

“Women, especially working mothers, are facing more significant obstacles under the current set-up compared to men. Close to half of working mothers (47%) have said they are struggling to balance their work and household responsibilities,” LinkedIn said.

LinkedIn also reported that 42% of working mothers believe that domestic responsibilities are “getting in the way of their career development.”

The report was conducted in January with 10,000 respondents across the Asia Pacific Region, including 1,256 in the Philippines.

The report found that working women in the Philippines have experienced more gender discrimination in professional settings. “Half of working women in the Philippines (believe) that their gender played a role in missing out on opportunities, promotion, and pay,” LinkedIn said.

Around 22% of working women said they had fewer career advancement opportunities while 14% said salaries compared to men in their profession were lower.

Overall, 51% of Filipino workers found the gender gap to be more manageable, having improved in recent years. Some 74% agreed that gender equality is important in society, though 31% expressed the opinion that gender equality cannot be achieved.

LinkedIn Vice-President for Talent and Learning Solutions in the Asia-Pacific Feon Ang said societal perceptions of women need to further improve especially with the workplace changing rapidly during the pandemic. This will ensure equitable opportunities and recovery for all.

“The Philippine workforce has taken a hit due to COVID-19 across the board, women included. The lack of time is the top barrier for women today — likely due to having to juggle remote working and family responsibilities. We also know that women are seeking to get ahead in life, and want equal access to opportunity as men,” Ms. Ang said in a statement Tuesday. — Gillian M. Cortez

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