A woman pushes a baby stroller through a gentle snow fall on a sidewalk just below Parliament Hill in Ottawa Saturday, January 8, 2011. A new report from Royal Bank of Canada says more than 20,000 women left Canada’s workforce between February and October, but about triple the number of men joined it. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand

A woman pushes a baby stroller through a gentle snow fall on a sidewalk just below Parliament Hill in Ottawa Saturday, January 8, 2011. A new report from Royal Bank of Canada says more than 20,000 women left Canada’s workforce between February and October, but about triple the number of men joined it. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand

Women leaving workforce faster than men, childcare playing big role in exodus: study

The study warns that this pattern could slow down the economic recovery

A new report from Royal Bank of Canada says more than 20,000 women left Canada’s workforce between February and October, but about triple the number of men joined it.

The study says raising children is likely the cause of the exodus, which is seeing women between ages 20 and 24 and 35 and 39 abandoning work faster than most other cohorts.

Mothers with children under six only made up 41 per cent of the labour force in February and yet, they account for two-thirds of the exodus.

The study warns that this pattern could slow down the economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and impact the future of industries largely dominated by women.

The economists behind the study are particularly worried because the high number of women who have lost their jobs during the pandemic are not temporarily laid off and don’t appear to be looking for work like their male counterparts.

RBC says this could be happening because women are more likely to work in industries slower to recover from COVID-19 restrictions, their ability to work from home may be much lower than men because they dominate the hospitality, retail and arts sectors and they often take on more onerous responsibilities associated with raising kids.

READ MORE: Feds probing ways to address COVID-19 impact on women

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

economywomen in business

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Phyllis Stenson, a mainstay of the local arts scene and the Harrison Festival of the Arts, passed away earlier this month. Stenson was crucial in setting up the foundation for relationships, funding and more that continue even now to echo well past her retirement in 2013. (Contributed Photo/Harrison Festival Society)
Harrison Festival, Fraser Valley arts icon Phyllis Stenson mourned

Stenson passed away in late November, leaving lasting legacy of passion for the arts behind

Construction is expected to start in March of 2021 on 23 new rental homes funded by the provincial government’s Community Housing Fund. (Metro Creative photo)
Province announces rental home project in Chilliwack paid for by Community Housing Fund

Twenty three homes for Indigenous families are planned in partnership with Tzeachten First Nation

Canadian Red Cross staff engaged in a Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and social distancing training exercise. (Luc Alary / Canadian Red Cross)
Red Cross canvassers following PHO guidelines while going door-to-door

Canvassers using safety protocols including masks and distancing to continue organization’s efforts

Chilliwack-Hope MP Mark Strahl, pictured here in 2017, has harsh words about the federal government’s Fall Economic Statement. (Black Press file)
Chilliwack MP Mark Strahl says Liberal government is leaving millions of Canadians behind

Strahl delivered a blistering critique of the federal government’s Fall Economic Statement

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s coronavirus situation at the legislature, Nov. 30, 2020. (B.C. government)
Hockey team brought COVID-19 back from Alberta, B.C. doctor says

Dr. Bonnie Henry pleads for out-of-province travel to stop

B.C. Premier John Horgan on a conference call with religious leaders from his B.C. legislature office, Nov. 18, 2020, informing them in-person church services are off until further notice. (B.C. government)
B.C. tourism relief coming soon, Premier John Horgan says

Industry leaders to report on their urgent needs next week

An RCMP cruiser looks on as a military search and rescue helicopter winds down near Bridesville, B.C. Tuesday, Dec. 1. Photo courtesy of RCMP Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey
B.C. Mountie, suspect airlifted by Canadian Armed Forces from ravine after foot chase

Military aircraft were dispatched from Comox, B.C., say RCMP

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Photo by Dale Klippenstein
Suspect tries to thwart police in Abbotsford with false 911 call about men with guns

Man twice sped away from officers and then tried to throw them off his trail

An 18-year old male southern resident killer whale, J34, is stranded near Sechelt in 2016. A postmortem examination suggests he died from trauma consistent with a vessel strike. (Photo supplied by Paul Cottrell, Fisheries and Oceans Canada)
“We can do better” — humans the leading cause of orca deaths: study

B.C. research reveals multitude of human and environmental threats affecting killer whales

Most Read