- Slides: 21
Women and Work 1880 s-Present Day
Women and work before World War One
• The largest group of women workers were in domestic service. They often worked long hours and lived in the homes of their employers.
• A large number of women worked in the textile industry
• Many women were employed in 'sweated industries' like shirt making, nail making and shoe stitching. Working hours were long and pay was very low
• Women began to find work in offices. The invention of the typewriter and the telephone played an important part in this.
• A growing number of women went to university. More women began to enter the professions e. g. there were 477 female doctors by 1911.
• Working women were paid less than men even if they did the same jobs. • It was rare for middle and upper class women to work. They were expected to marry then look after their children and their home.
Women and The First World War
• Women did the jobs of men who were fighting in the war. • Women did important work in munitions factories
• Women worked in service jobs e. g. public transport, farm work, nursing and the Civil Service
• Women's pay increased during the war. • Many women lost their jobs when the war ended and men returned home.
Inter-War Period • Women were better educated as a result of the Education Acts of 1902 and 1918. There were more job opportunities for women in the 1920's and 1930's due to better education. Many women found work as clerks, teachers and nurses. • Industries changed. Many women found work in the new light industries e. g. making electrical goods. • The Sex Disqualification Act of 1919 made it easier for women to go to university and enter the professions. Middle class women benefited from increased job opportunities. .
• The Marriage Bar prevented many women from staying at work after marriage. The civil service did not allow women to work after marriage. • Working conditions in the home remained very hard. Cleaning, washing and cooking took up a great deal of time. New electrical appliances such as washing machines and vacuum cleaners slightly improved the working conditions of housewives in the 1930 s. • By the 1930 s about one third of women in Britain worked outside the home. One tenth of married women worked
Women and work After World War Two
• Women carried out vital war work during World War Two. Many women learned skills which helped them to find work after the war was over. • Light industries such as electronics continued to grow and provided many job opportunities for women. • Service industries such as banking grew and provided many jobs for women.
• Many women were employed in shop work. • Many women found work in the new welfare services set up in the 1940 s. Large numbers of women found jobs in the National Health Service. • By the 1960 s, 38% of married women worked. • Women were paid less than men even if they did the same jobs
Women and work - the fight for equality
• Many employers were against equal pay for women. They were afraid of losing money. • Many trade unions were against equal pay for women. They believed that equal pay would lower men’s wages. • Some jobs introduced equal pay for women before others. Women's wages in the civil service and teaching matched men’s wages by 1961.
• The Equal Pay Act was passed in 1971. Men and women were to be paid the same wage for doing the same work. • The Sex Discrimination Act was passed in 1975. Women were to treated in the same way as men in education, housing and employment. • Despite changes in the law women in Britain are still employed in less skilled and lower paid jobs than men. Many women are expected to work and look after a home at the same time.