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Economy & Labor

Spotlighting the unique challenges faced by women in the global workforce -- from lower wages to sexual and physical abuse and human trafficking -- and holding accountable those who perpetrate or allow such injustices.

The Ukrainian women farmers fighting to keep the world fed

The war in Ukraine is taking a terrible toll on the country’s farmers and the world’s hungry, exacerbating an already crippling food crisis. These Ukrainian women farmers on the front lines of Russia’s hunger war.

Financial Pandemic: 'What I thought was a great salary wasn’t so great with more than 65 percent inflation'

Argentine Silvana Perona, 45, spent much of the past two decades working in finance in Europe but moved home to Buenos Aires during the pandemic to be closer to her elderly parents. Even though her work is well-paid, the country's worst inflation in 30 years has left her counting every penny.
Related:
- For a refugee in crisis-hit Lebanon, even buying bread is a struggle
- As living costs spiral in Kenya, a mother sacrifices to spare family from ‘dire times’
- ‘Sri Lanka is not a country for poor people now’ - A Lima woman is fighting to feed her community as food prices soar

Financial Pandemic: For a refugee in crisis-hit Lebanon, even buying bread is a struggle 

Zahwa Ashwah, a widow in her sixties, lives in a refugee camp in Lebanon, where food and fuel prices have soared since a 2019 economic crisis. She and her family now struggle to afford enough to eat.
Related:
- As living costs spiral in Kenya, a mother sacrifices to spare family from ‘dire times’
- ‘Sri Lanka is not a country for poor people now’
- Lima woman fights to feed her community as food prices soar

The hidden toll of heat waves on women in South Asia

South Asia has endured an unprecedented heat wave, with March seeing the hottest temperatures on record in India. Evidence suggests the heat is landing a cruel double blow on women’s income and health.

Related: Reporter’s Notebook: Women’s invisibility in climate stories erase their narratives. The result is bad policy

Baby formula marketing practices are still too aggressive, WHO report finds


The baby milk formula shortage in the United States has overshadowed fresh scrutiny over the industry’s dubious marketing. Globally, experts warn that these companies have long employed predatory marketing in order to maximize the purchase of formula at the expense of breastfeeding.

Related: The loneliest lactation consultant in the world

Reporter’s Notebook: Women’s invisibility in climate stories erase their narratives. The result is bad policy

According to official government statistics, 75.7% of rural women in India are engaged in agriculture. But in article after article, farmers are often exclusively portrayed as men. With the changing climate hitting the agriculture sector hard, women’s invisibility in media coverage leaves their distress unacknowledged.

Financial Pandemic: 'Everything is harder now'

Asencia Tuamana, 55, started “Bello Horizonte,” a communal kitchen, in September 2020 to share resources during a nationwide lockdown that left millions of Peruvians with no income. She serves as many as 140 people during the week — even as rising costs make her daily work increasingly more difficult.

Financial Pandemic: ‘Sri Lanka is not a country for poor people now’

Cooking has become an act of danger for a Sri Lankan woman who can no longer afford to safely heat her stove. As gas prices more than double, kerosene and firewood, more affordable but hazardous, are the next viable option. Read Feroza Hussein’s story on how the country’s economic crisis has permeated all aspects of her life.

Financial Pandemic: As living costs spiral in Kenya, a mother sacrifices to spare family from ‘dire times’

With food prices soaring to over 12% over the past year, the economic repercussions of the pandemic are being heavily felt across Kenya. Women are particularly vulnerable.

‘We have to fight back.’ Afghan women are losing their hard-won right to work under the Taliban

Afghan women's participation in the workforce rose steadily in the 20 years after the Taliban were ousted from government. Since they returned to power, those gains have been rapidly eroding. Now activists fear a new edict mandating the burqa in public could destroy them altogether.

‘I can’t keep this baby’: Pregnant Ukrainian refugees struggle to get abortion care

Poland has become a place of refuge for millions of women fleeing war in Ukraine. It also has some of Europe’s most restrictive abortion laws, posing a major challenge to refugees with unwanted pregnancies. Some have survived rape, others simply cannot imagine taking on the responsibility of a child while their futures are so uncertain.

‘Every shift, we’re just barely making it’: What nurses want us to know about the South’s COVID crisis

The pandemic didn’t create the nursing plight in the South, but burnout and low pay have made it worse.

In rural India, stricken by pandemic, necessity of invention fills in for the state: Reporter’s Notebook

A short news clip about the mysterious deaths of two women in a home they shared with their family took reporter Puja Changoiwala on a journey through a COVID-ravaged landscape in rural India.

Analysis: India is building a women-only social safety net

Political parties across India have promised a host of new social programs exclusively for women. Is it politics or progress?

In the Sundarban, climate change has an unlikely effect — on child sex-trafficking

Child trafficking is on the rise in one of the most climate vulnerable places on earth—revealing blind spots in climate policy, experts tell contributor Ritwika Mitra.

COVID ‘crisis moment’ for families with children in NYC pre-K and 3K programs

Ten-day quarantines are forcing families to keep young kids home, causing chaos for those in need of child care — regardless of negative COVID test results.

Ghosts of racist boarding school era still haunt Minnesota’s foster care system, Indigenous mothers say

For many Native mothers, the fear of having their children ripped away from them and the ripple effects of generations of forced family separations remain omnipresent.

She made jeans for Americans. When they stopped shopping, she turned to sex work

As the garment sector—one of the Lesotho’s largest employers—crumbles during the coronavirus pandemic, a 30-year-old factory worker turns to sex work to make do.
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