Giving Compass' Take:

• The authors at RAND Corporation discuss how tenuous a time it is to be a working mother, not only financially but also mentally. 

• How can jobs begin to adapt and adjust be more inclusive to the needs of working mothers? What role can donors play in advocating to help?

• Here's an article on the plight of the working mother. 

At the start of 2020, even before the coronavirus pandemic upended daily life, being a working parent was a challenge. Parents are less happy than non-parents. But in the United States, where there is less access to subsidized childcare, parental leave and paid time off, the happiness penalty to parenthood is even larger. And unlike fathers, mothers are less likely than their childless counterparts to be hired, and receive lower salary offers (PDF) when they are offered a job, adding a wage penalty to the happiness penalty.

On top of this, time-use surveys have consistently found that, unlike many working fathers, the majority of working mothers have a second shift at home, in which they carry out a greater share of household tasks.

Yet, working mothers are often critical economic contributors to their household. In 2017, the Department of Labor estimated that mothers earned at least half of household income in 40 percent of households with children.

Enter the pandemic. Schools are closed for in-person instruction through the end of the year in most states, and many childcare facilities closed by state order or local preference. For working mothers, this means adding a third shift to the day—full-time childcare and homeschooling.

Read the full article about working moms during economic crisis by Melanie A. Zaber and Kathryn A. Edwards at RAND Corporation.