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Central Region

central-minnesota-mapCentral Minnesota is a manufacturing stronghold, with several global manufacturing firms operating there.

The region is especially well known for its expertise in food processing, printing, furniture manufacturing, appliances, machinery and heavy equipment manufacturing.

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Shifting Employment of Male and Female Workers in Central Minnesota

4/13/2022 9:00:00 AM

Luke Greiner

Job losses in 2020 occurred across almost every industry to some degree, however certain sectors experienced more harsh impacts of the COVID-19 recession. Furthermore the inability of certain industries to recover employment caused many temporary job losses to become a lingering problem. The layoffs and rebounding employment affected men and women workers to a different degree depending on the concentration of employment in certain industries.

In Central Minnesota, women hold a slightly higher share of jobs compared to men at 50.5% and 49.5% respectively, but that higher share decreased slightly from 2019 to 2021, the result of more job losses by women than men.

The disproportionate share of job loss experienced by women can be attributed to the industries that women are employed in. Unlike the Great Recession, where job losses were highly concentrated in male dominated sectors like Manufacturing and Construction, the pandemic recession affected industries that employ a disproportionate amount of women – Health Care, Education, Accommodation and Food Services, and Other Services.

A silver lining, albeit small, is that a few higher paying male-dominated sectors like Construction and Manufacturing hired women at higher rates than men over the same period (see Figure 1).

Central Minnesota Employment Change by Gender

At the same time that layoffs were occurring, many women, typically the primary caretaker of children and aging adults, were facing pandemic-related policies that made balancing work and family responsibilities incredibly challenging. With Mother's Day right around the corner, it serves as a great reminder to consider how we might do a better job of supporting the women who participate in the labor force while also caring for family.

For More Information

Contact Luke Greiner at 320-308-5378.

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