Globally as well as in America, women are more likely to be poor than men. In fact, America has the largest gap in the Western world between men and women in poverty across all racial groups. This disparity exists in spite of substantial gains made by women over the last 40 years. Almost 63 percent of American women are the primary or co-primary source of income for their family; yet an American woman is 35 percent more likely to be poor than an American man.

The economic downturn that began in 2007 strained many good-paying jobs for both men and women. Women in particular were caught in a bind; the availability of lower-paying pink-collar jobs (e.g., secretarial and customer-service oriented jobs) remained strong. However, women in ...

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