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Jobs for the boys... and the girls.

23 replies

OnwardBound · 09/05/2013 22:59

Today's Evening Standard [London] has an article about how skill gaps are holding back economic growth and that the biggest shortages tend to be in areas where there is a gender divide.

The journalist gives the example of primary school teaching, nursery care, midwifery and adult social care as being occupations in which demand outstrips supply. These are also predominantly staffed by women and are seen generally as "jobs for the girls".

The journalist then goes on to state that "However, just as there are roles that are dominated by women, there are others that are almost exclusively male and these often tend to be higher skilled and better paid".

The article goes on to state these male dominated roles as being engineering, technology, chefs and drivers i.e. for delivery work.

This assertion has made me Angry.

Am I wrong to feel that part of the reason why female dominated work is underpaid and undervalued is that there is this perception in society that any work that men does is automatically 'higher skilled' and therefore worthy of more pay than that done by women?

I fail to see how teaching, midwifery and social work is necessarily lesser skilled than engineering or technology, let alone a career as a chef or a delivery driver.


OP posts:

andubelievedthat · 09/05/2013 23:11

yes imo you are right women have had to fight for every scrap of equality ,did you see the show on tv a while back about the women at a ford plant ,years ago in their struggle to get equal pay ? and I bet that was a !watered down " version of the true shit they went thru" Glass ceiling my arse ,same old ,same old.unfortunately


Lj8893 · 09/05/2013 23:22

I do agree with you absolutely up until your point about chefs not being highly skilled.....

Yes many people can be chefs (or cooks, there is a difference) but a non trained chef is never going to be the same standard or as highly paid as a highly trained chef!

My dp is a chef and although young (20) is of a greater wage and skill than many of his current and previous colleagues who arnt trained.


1Catherine1 · 09/05/2013 23:32

Oh come on Onward, Delivery driving is much harder than those glorified babysitters that call themselves teachers and those baby collectors, otherwise known as midwives! [wonders how many people won't spot sarcasm in written form]

Problem here is, that those female dominated roles tend to be public services and hence tax payer paid. Unfortunately some people believe that some of these roles are overpaid already - including the government. The Government seem to believe the only people who should be paid a lot from the public purse is those hard working MPs Hmm. The male dominated roles tend to be privately owned industries so pay more. Or so I keep being told, every time I moan that I want more money..

Although, I should point out - Delivery driver isn't really skilled or well paid unless your driving a HGV or something. I used to work along side many in my uni days. So unless something has changed in the last 10 years...


ComposHat · 09/05/2013 23:37

Thing is of the three examples given, midwifery, social work and teaching are all professional jobs with career progression and a pay scale.

I'd also argue that they are fairly secure, decently paid and fairly secure in comparison to some of the 'male' jobs mentioned below. Certainly compared to chefs and delivery drivers.


OnwardBound · 09/05/2013 23:37

Lj I don't mean to say that chefs aren't skilled... but are they more skilled than a teacher or midwife?

I was willing to concede that perhaps some engineers may be more skilled than some midwives, purely as some may have more qualifications in their field, i.e a masters [this of course can be argued the other way too].

I think though this article put teachers and midwives on a par with the non trained chef!

OP posts:

ALittleBitOfMagic · 09/05/2013 23:44

Unless you work in a top restaurant and/or are willing to work in excess of 60 hours per week , teachers and social workers will always be higher paid than chefs .


Lj8893 · 09/05/2013 23:53

Absolutely a non trained chef isn't as highly skilled as any of the "female" roles.

But a highly trained chef (someone who has trained for 3 years minimum) and has ongoing training, yes I think they are as skilled as say a teacher for example.

I can't say the same for delivery drivers though.....


Boomba · 09/05/2013 23:56

its gas-lighting. boys jobs have o be more skilled, else how do they justify higher wages


MrsTerryPratchett · 09/05/2013 23:58

Plenty of the SWs I know have Masters degrees.


cantspel · 09/05/2013 23:59

when they said delivery divers they probably didn't mean the bloke who works for tesco delivering the home shop. It probably refers to hgv drivers which is a highly skilled job.


Lj8893 · 09/05/2013 23:59

Are delivery drivers really higher paid than a midwife though?

That's very surprising!!


Boomba · 10/05/2013 00:00

'SKILL' is quite a dodgy word to be using in this context anyway. I am an engineer; i dont think there is much 'skill' involved at all; lots of training, lots of sums....

do they mean to say 'more highly qualified'?


Lj8893 · 10/05/2013 00:00

Ahh cantspell that makes more sense!


ALittleBitOfMagic · 10/05/2013 00:01

Lj where are you ? I only ask because my dh is a highly trained chef and has even been a head chef for a year (didn't like it too much paperwork not enough cooking) and has never been paid as much as a teacher . The only way he would get a wage like that would be to go into the nearest city , which requires a 1.5 hour commute and a 14 hour day .


Lj8893 · 10/05/2013 00:04

We are in Bournemouth, so many many many hotels and resturants in high demand for good chefs.

It certainly is a career that takes alot of work and effort to start making any kind of good money though, ill give you that!

Good luck and I'm sure your DH hard work will pay off eventually :)


ALittleBitOfMagic · 10/05/2013 00:05

Think we need to move to Bournemouth . See you soon GrinGrin


Boomba · 10/05/2013 00:05

i think yous are all missin the point a bit. I dont think OP really intended to diss the menz; but was trying to point out that the lady-type jobs are not 'less-skilled' than them


Lj8893 · 10/05/2013 00:06

Oh and dp still has a way to go but is earning the same wage as what a newly qualified teacher would be earning (I think, don't quote me on that!)


BOF · 10/05/2013 00:08

"Social care" doesn't mean social workers, necessarily, though. It can mean care assistants, who are very low-paid. Actually, you need to be an exceptionally emotionally intelligent person to be a good care assistant (like psychiatric nurses and hospital porters), but the work is so undervalued that it is usually minimum wage, and any old sod from the job centre is encouraged to apply for it. Hence the awful stories of shitty treatment of our most vulnerable people.


ShadowStorm · 10/05/2013 00:11

Someone working as a professional engineer will almost certainly be university educated, to at least BEng level (MEng commoner for younger engineers, as most engineering institutes require MEng for engineers to achieve chartership). So typically highly qualified.


Boomba · 10/05/2013 00:15

Not so. I worked in a design consultancy. Most of the engineers I worked with did not go to university. I was the only one in our team, including our regional director. They had all worked their way up through apprenticeships


shufflehopstep · 10/05/2013 00:25

This isn't new. I read a report by the EOC from about 10 years ago that said a lot of professions that were "female" had become devalued. For example HR roles 40 years ago would have been held by highly paid men - nowadays it is a female-dominated profession and salaries are comparatively lower and generally seen as clerical. Also women are more likely to hold lower paid jobs as they are more likely to move to jobs closer to home with flexible working patterns to fit around childcare. They are called the 5 Cs: Catering, Caring, Cleaning, Clerical and Cashiering.


OnwardBound · 10/05/2013 06:07

That's really interesting shuffle...

Pardon my ignorance, but who are the EOC?

OP posts:
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