A red sign reading Closed Due to Coronavirus hangs on a glass store door.
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Women made up more than two-thirds of Vermont's unemployment insurance claims last year. Women left the workforce at higher rates than men all over the U.S., but Vermont's rate is the highest in the country. This hour, we talk about the economic toll of COVID-19 on women in Vermont's workforce, especially women of color. 

Here's a stunning stat: Women are leaving the workforce at four times the rate as men.

The burden of parenting and running a household while also working a job during the pandemic has created a pressure cooker environment in many households, and women are bearing the brunt of it.

Closeup on medical mask and hand disinfectant and stressed woman in background in temporary home office during the coronavirus epidemic in the house in sunny day.
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A new state report finds women in Vermont have been disproportionately affected by the coronavirus. The COVID-19 disease itself has affected their personal health, but the economic downturn associated with the pandemic has also seen a uniquely large impact on women's financial stability and economic security. This hour, we'll take a close look at the report's findings.

"Crazy," "hysterical," "overreactive," "hormonal." These are stereotypes many women still have to fight to be taken seriously. And that fight can be especially challenging because so many women do face very real symptoms such as bloating, headaches, irritability and mood changes — often on a monthly cycle.

The writer Ada Calhoun has talked to a lot of Generation X women about the angst they might be feeling as they hit midlife.

"Being middle-aged in America right now as a middle-class American woman is different than it was for our mothers and grandmothers," she says, "and for a lot of women — not for all of them, but for a lot of them — it is incredibly hard."

She's not talking about poor women or rich women, but middle-class women. And in her new book, Why We Can't Sleep, Calhoun lays out what makes the burdens heavier on Gen X than other generations.

The pathway to opioid abuse for women often starts with a prescription from the doctor's office. One reason is that women are more likely than men to seek help for pain.

Pain researchers say that not only do women suffer more painful conditions, they actually perceive pain more intensely than men do.

Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

More than half the rural counties in the United States no longer have hospitals where women can give birth, according to a 2017 study by the University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center.

New England’s doing better than the rest of the country, but the decision by Springfield Hospital to close its child birth center has some people worried about the future of obstetric medical care in the region.

Boston Herald.

Thirty thousand men and women are in Hopkinton, Massachusetts to take part in the one hundred and twenty first running of the Boston Marathon. As the participants crowd together at the start, the energy will build until it’s released by the starting gun. And as the competitors surge forward, enthusiastic spectators will cheer them along for twenty six point two miles.

At first Vermont and Mississippi don’t appear to have much in common, but a recent report notes that they’re the only two states who’ve never sent a woman to Congress. Released by South Burlington-based Change the Story last week, Vermont Women and Leadership is the fourth in a series of studies related to women’s economic status in the Green Mountain State.

YUCELOZBER / iStock.com

Vermonters have all kinds of ways to boost their income potential, from education to professional training. But there’s a statistical drag on future earnings that half of this state’s residents can’t escape, and advocates are still working to close the persistent pay gap between men and women.

Women In Tech: How Vermont Fits In

Apr 4, 2017
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In the midst of a national discussion about whether the tech industry is welcoming to women, we're plugging into the local community and asking what's top of mind for women in tech.

Gina Nemirofsky / Ten Times Ten LLC

You know the story of Malala Yousafzai, a Pakistani girl who was almost assassinated for advocating for girls' education, and who later won a Nobel Peace Prize for efforts. But a new book by Vermont writer reminds us there are millions of Malalas in the world, and the barriers to their education are profound.

Craig Dingle / iStock.com

A lot of us have been in conversations lately about what it's like to be a woman in this particular political and cultural moment. On the next Vermont Edition, we're moving that conversation into the studio.

Harvard Art Museum/Fogg Museum, Historical Photographs and Special Visual Collections Department, Fine Arts Library / This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published (or registered with the U.S. Copyright Office) before January 1, 1923.

The first women who sought the American presidency in the 19th century did so in order to turn a spotlight on the fact that women had neither the right to vote nor full rights as citizens.

VladSt / iStock.com

New reports on women in the Vermont workforce show a wage and income disparity with their male counterparts that gets worse as women get older.

New York Times reporter Jodi Kantor covers workplace issues from the demanding culture of Amazon to challenges low income women face in pumping milk at work to how new scheduling apps are keeping workers from a steady income.

Vermont Historical Society

The best-known native of Vermont's Plymouth Notch is probably still President Calvin Coolidge.

But if you visit the little village's graveyard, someone else's grave is arguably more intriguing. At the bottom of the stone slab is the inscription "I Still Live." This is the final resting place of Achsa Sprague. 

TH3DSTO / iStock

Germany may have a woman chancellor, but more than two-thirds of German businesses have no women in a senior role. It’s not much better in the United States. According to a study by the Grant Thornton International Business Report, of 45 countries, the U.S. ranked ninth from last when it came to women in top managerial positions – well behind Russia, Indonesia, Latvia and Peru.

You might think things are better in Vermont. But of the 99 largest employers in the state, just 15 percent are headed by women. 

UT Center for Sport, Peace and Society

Wasfia Nazreen is a woman on a mission: in her home country of Bangladesh, she works in the non-profit sector to help marginalized girls. And she’s shining a spotlight on that work by climbing the highest peak on each continent. She started the Bangladesh on Seven Summits Foundation to raise awareness for her cause, and that earned her a spot in a U.S. State Department project called the Global Sports Mentoring Program.

Rich Pedroncelli / AP

On any given day, there are around 160 women in prison in Vermont. That’s a small percentage of the overall population, but the number of women in prison has been steadily increasing over the last few years.

On the next Vermont Edition, we’ll talk about the specific challenges faced by Vermont women in prison with Jill Evans, Director of Women and Family Services at the Department of Corrections. We'll also talk to Julie Brisson, coordinator of the Wellness Workforce Coalition at the Vermont Center for Independent Living, who served time in Swanton prison in 2009.