Do you agree with the view that job flexibility is the key to equal pay? 

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As I understand it, this question asks whether we could get women to have pay equal to that of men if jobs were more flexible.  I partially agree with this statement.  I agree because much of the reason why women fall behind men in terms of pay is that women take time off from work to have children and then work fewer hours than men because of family commitments.  However, I disagree with this statement to some degree because these factors do not account for all of the differences between men’s and women’s pay.

As we can see in the links below, women pay a large price for being the sex that bears children and for the fact that our society still expects them to do most of the work of caring for the children when they are young.  If women take time off from work (and if men do not) when they have children, they fall behind in the race for seniority and higher positions within companies.  If women work fewer hours than men because they need to be available to do things like bringing children to after school activities, the same thing happens.  By doing these things, women come to make less than men.  If jobs were more flexible, they would be more able to accommodate women.  Flexible jobs would allow women to keep their jobs and hours up while having and raising children.  This would prevent their pay from lagging behind that of men.

On the other hand, there are factors other than job flexibility that prevent women from earning equal pay.  Women get paid less in part because our society expects them to do more of the work of raising children.  That would not end if jobs became more flexible.  Women get paid less in part because they tend to gravitate towards some jobs that do not pay as well as predominantly male jobs.  This would not change if jobs became more flexible.

While job flexibility would help improve the problem of unequal pay for men and women, it would not eradicate it completely.

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