Gender Disparities in the Labour Market? Examining the COVID-19 Pandemic in Alberta

43 Pages Posted: 16 Jun 2021

See all articles by John Baker

John Baker

University of Waterloo

Kourtney Koebel

University of Toronto - Centre For Industrial Relations

Lindsay M. Tedds

University of Calgary - The School of Public Policy; University of Calgary - Department of Economics

Date Written: June 9, 2021

Abstract

Since March 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly disrupted Canada’s labour market. Following the mandated closures of schools, daycares and “non-essential” businesses in every province, a large and immediate unemployment shock was documented across the country. While signs of recovery began during the summer months, the re-emergence of the virus in the fall—and the extensive social distancing measures that ensued—merits an investigation of a possible K-shaped recovery, particularly as the Alberta government continues to debate whether the province’s economic recovery plan should include gender-targeted policies. This paper provides a detailed examination of various labour force statistics by gender and parental status using data from Alberta up to and including the December 2020 release of the Labour Force Survey (LFS). We show that Alberta’s labour market recovery over the summer months has persisted, and that there are no statistically significant differences in the labour market outcomes of men and women. We do, however, find significant differences between parents and non-parents, irrespective of gender. We discuss implications for Alberta’s economic recovery plan.

Keywords: Coronavirus disease, Labour Market, Employment, Gender, Public Policy, Alberta, Intersectionality

JEL Classification: J08, J21

Suggested Citation

Baker, John and Koebel, Kourtney and Tedds, Lindsay M., Gender Disparities in the Labour Market? Examining the COVID-19 Pandemic in Alberta (June 9, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3862950 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3862950

John Baker

University of Waterloo ( email )

Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3G1
Canada

Kourtney Koebel

University of Toronto - Centre For Industrial Relations ( email )

Toronto M5S 2E8
Canada

Lindsay M. Tedds (Contact Author)

University of Calgary - The School of Public Policy ( email )

Calgary, Alberta
Canada

University of Calgary - Department of Economics ( email )

University Drive
Calgary, Alberta T2N 1N4
Canada

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