LECCE, ITALY - 10 DECEMBER 2020: A mother walks down the street next to a cafe that shut down during the lockdown, in the historical center of Lecce, Apulia, Italy, on December 10th 2020.
Unlike the 2008 financial crisis, the pandemic’s employment shock hit women harder than men across much of the Western world. The impact on women has been especially severe in Southern Italy, which already has Europe’s widest employment gender gap.
In Italy, 51 percent of women work compared with 68 percent of men, the seventh highest women’s unemployment rate in the world despite improvements in the last decade
The Global Gender Gap Report 2020 published by the World Economic Forum prior to the pandemic states that the advancement of women has regressed by nearly a century. Italy has performed worse than most European nations in this analysis, falling six spots to seventeenth position in Europe; only Greece, Malta and Cyprus fared more poorly.
The gender pay gap highlights the most critical issue. On average, non-university-educated men earn 6,000 euro more than women with a degree in Italy.