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There’s a price to pay for being afraid of women’s leadership, especially in a pandemic

From left: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, Finland Prime Minister Sanna Marin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Republic of China President Tsai Ing-WenWhat would the COVID-19 crises have looked like if there had been an equal gender distribution of power and if the U.S. was led by a woman? Some of the countries doing best under the pandemic are run by women. Above, from left to right, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, Finland Prime Minister Sanna Marin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Republic of China President Tsai Ing-Wen.

By Star-Ledger Guest Columnist

Excerpt by Rebecca Mark, Ph.D. Director of the Institute for Women’s Leadership and Professor in the Department of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Rutgers University.

Essential worker status, school closures, unemployment, and quarantining within the home, put an enormous burden on everyone. But for women already in precarious economic and social positions, this COVID-19 crisis has meant increasing the demand for their paid and unpaid care work. They are making impossible choices. Many women of color, particularly Black women, are on the front lines in low-wage occupations, experiencing a lack of access to quality health care, high unemployment, morbidity, and mortality.

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