Older women are the nation’s great untapped resource
Skills and experience are going to waste. Labour is a taking a lead, but the other parties ignore this demographic at their peril
Jackie Ashley is 58 years of age.
After that little sneer about the Me Generation, she really still doesn’t seem to get it.
But the media reflects a much wider underrepresentation of women generally, and older women particularly. The “experts” in politics, economics, culture, business and the professions – in effect, those who rule the country – are mostly men.
That in turn feeds back into the workplace, where older women are half as likely to be managers as men are, and where the pay gap is worst for women in their 40s and 50s.
But the fact is that older women are not only better educated, but have mostly emerged through intensely challenging years of balancing work and family. Many are going through the toughest time of caring for others at both ends of the age spectrum; but huge numbers are also emerging from that.
Blinking, we are coming back into the world and asking – now what?
Err, that’s why you silly trout.
That a large portion of women do take time out, a decade or more to raise the little ‘uns, is why there are fewer women at the top of the professions and thus why the gender pay gap is largest among women in their 40s and 50s.
It’s straight cause and effect, d’ye see?