4 ways to help women get back into work 

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The pandemic exposed rampant inequities between men and women in the workforce and saw many women being pushed out of the workforce, but there are clear ways to help them reenter through federal policy, Bloomberg reported Nov 18.

1. Paid parental leave

Currently, only 23 percent of U.S. workers have access to paid family leave. Many workers, and predominantly women, get by instead by taking vacation time or dropping out of the workforce completely to care for their children. The Build Back Better plan that could enter the House for a vote has four weeks of parental leave included, down from the proposed 12. 

2. Affordable child care

Young women were almost three times as likely to be unable to work because of child care demands compared to men. Child care is also often very costly, with parents spending an average of over $8,000 per child a year on child care. Expanding access to affordable child care would allow more young women into the workforce and reduce the expense for them. 

3. Assistance with elder care

Just like child care, women do a disproportionate amount of caregiving for sick and elderly family members and friends. It's estimated that more than 75 percent of caregivers are women, who also put 50 percent more time into providing care than men. Allowing workers access to paid family or caregiving leave will help keep female workers.

4. Child tax credit extension

Helping families with children pay the bills month to month as opposed to a lump sum can help lift families out of poverty and food insecurity, experts say. For single mothers, who make up the majority of single-parent households, the lessened financial burden can ease stress. This can give women more confidence and resilience to enter the workforce.

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