Forget the “He-covery”: Women Are Heading Back to Work

The number of women with jobs increased by 300,000 over the past six months. This would be good news anytime, but what’s particularly significant is that men returned to work at the same rate. The “he-covery,” in other words, might soon be a thing of the past.

“The recovery has definitely picked up for women in the last year,” said Joan Entmacher, vice president of family economic security at the National Women’s Law Center.

Speaking with CNN, Entmacher said that women have recovered 32 percent of the jobs lost during the recession, while men have recovered 43 percent of jobs.

The news is even better in terms of wages, at least if you look at percentage of increase. Heidi Hartmann, president of the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, told CNN that women’s median weekly wages have increased from $667 in 2008 to $684 in 2011, while men’s have stayed the same at $834. ($834 remains $150 more than $684, but baby steps.)

Hartmann attributes the gains in part to women’s increased employment in well-paying sectors like health care, as well as increased levels of education among women. Men, on the other hand, were disproportionately affected by the loss of jobs in construction and manufacturing.

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