What is the motherhood tax?

Usually when the topic of gender pay hole comes up, so does the notion that it’s due partly as a result of ladies are more likely than males to take time without work after the delivery of a kid.

Nevertheless, the lacking a part of that equation is the method moms—each those that take time without work and people who don’t—are paid in another way than males after they grow to be dad and mom. It’s a standard phenomenon referred to as the Motherhood Tax or Motherhood Penalty and the Fatherhood Bonus.

Ladies expertise a penalty, when they’re anticipating or grow to be moms. Presumably this is as a result of the assumption of their employers that the bulk of childcare will fall on them and they’ll subsequently be much less dedicated to their work. The flip facet of this is the fatherhood bonus, that males, on common, get pleasure from a large revenue enhance for being dad and mom. The explanation why are simply as rooted in gender stereotypes: The concept is that males who’re fathers are extra accountable and shall be extra devoted to their jobs and also will want more cash, as a result of they’ve a household to help.


This discrepancy in pay for moms and dads is constant throughout all teams, together with totally different ethnicities, schooling ranges, occupations and ages.

Claudia Reuter, writer and CEO joined me on the newest episode of The New Method We Work podcast to clarify how this performs out in ladies’s careers, and options each large and small that corporations can implement to begin to deal with working dad and mom, and all workers, equally.

In line with Reuter it begins with how we view a profession hole on a mom’s résumé. She says, there is a “sense that folks want to clarify their hole yr, as a substitute of articulating the worth that they offered throughout these years. Identical to a university child explains why they traveled abroad and that was an excellent expertise for them. By some means we’ve devalued the caregiving expertise a lot that folks really feel like they should disguise it and so they can’t even discuss it.”

She goes on to clarify the beneficial transferable administration expertise that oldsters be taught caring for kids and managing the complexities of household life.

As for plans like the Marshall Plan for Mothers that suggest direct month-to-month funds to main caregivers, Reuter thinks it’s an excellent begin, however doesn’t go far sufficient. She says, “It’s $2,400 a month, which at 40 hours per week, is $15 an hour. If it’s a 24/7 job, which it is, that’s $5.71 an hour. So right here we’re in 2021 lastly saying there’s a greenback quantity related to caregiving, however we’re nonetheless saying that, that greenback quantity equates to a minimal wage or much less.”

She suggests the greatest answer is one which totally invests in early childhood care and schooling and that it’s the position of each the private and non-private sectors.

For extra tangible options that leaders can implement instantly (together with rethinking your organization’s assembly schedule), take heed to the full episode right here.