On this week’s 51%, a regional Girl Scouts continues its mission despite the pandemic, hear about the economic well-being of women in Vermont, and Dr. Jeri Burns talks about etiquette for a Zoom wedding.
Like most every facet of our society, the Girl Scouts have had to adjust to life during a pandemic. And a regional Girl Scouts in New York named a new CEO earlier this year, who takes over during challenging times. Brenda Episcopo is the new CEO of Girl Scouts of Northeastern New York. She most recently served as CEO of the United Way of New York State, the state association of United Ways. I spoke with Episcopo at the end of February about her new role, cookies, camp and more.
Girl Scouts of Northeastern New York represents nearly 8,500 Girl Scouts in 15 counties.
The United Nations theme for International Women’s Day, which was March 8, is “Women in Leadership: Achieving an Equal Future in a COVID-19 World.” A discussion on the economic well-being of Vermont women looked at data and policy changes experts say are needed to bridge disparities between genders. 51%’s Pat Bradley reports.
And just before International Women’s Day, “The Economist” released its ninth annual glass-ceiling index (GCI). The GCI is a yearly assessment of where women have the best and worst chances of equal treatment at work in countries in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), a group of mostly wealthy countries. The index combines data on higher education, labor force participation, pay, child care costs, maternity and paternity rights, business school applications and representation in senior jobs. This comes as the glass ceiling cracked on Wall Street March 1 as Jane Fraser became the first woman to lead a large American bank — Citigroup.
The U.S. moved up four spots on the index since last year, to number 18. Yet while its proportion of women in management roles and on boards is above average, it remains stuck below the OECD average with no federally-mandated paid parental leave. Sweden is the best place to work if you are a woman, followed by its Nordic neighbors, Iceland, Finland and Norway. The Nordics are particularly effective at helping women complete college, secure a job, access senior positions, and take advantage of quality parental-leave systems and flexible work schedules.
South Korea bottoms out the index for the ninth year in a row with Japan and Turkey not far behind. Societal norms in Asia still expect women to choose between having a family or a career. Britain moved up three spots on the index to number 20 this year; its share of women in senior jobs is around one-third. Germany moved down the ranking from last year to number 22. German women hold just 29 percent of managerial roles, and a quarter of seats on boards France ranks number 5 in the GCI, the same as last year. France ranks second for the highest share of women on company boards, behind Iceland.
And now Dr. Jeri Burns reflects upon attending a wedding, virtually.
Dr. Jeri Burns is a storyteller, writer and educator living in New York's Hudson Valley. You can find her at storycrafters.com. Burns also is an adjunct professor in the Department of Communication at the State University of New York at New Paltz.
That’s our show for this week. Thanks to Tina Renick for production assistance. Our executive producer is Dr. Alan Chartock. Our theme music is Glow in the Dark by Kevin Bartlett. This show is a national production of Northeast Public Radio. If you’d like to hear this show again, sign up for our podcast, or visit the 51% archives on our web site at wamc.org. And follow us on Twitter @51PercentRadio