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Women's Rights

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Working Women: Are They Really Equal?

Compared to the early twentieth century, women today have more rights and opportunities in the workplace and other areas. Back in that day, women didn't have the right to vote and were considered their husbands' property. However, a lot has changed due to the women's rights movement in the 1960's, and more and more women today are taking leadership roles in the workforce.

After stating these facts, one might come to think that women are treated equally now, and are offered the same positions as a man in the workforce is offered. Nevertheless, women are not treated equally when it comes to the roles in the workplace, or even the responsibilities in the workplace. Some of these treatments are stemmed from the old norms of women being the care takers of the home, which is seen as an inferior job or responsibility to a male role. This paper will take an in depth look at why women are not given the same wages or occupational positions as men, as well as show what is to come for the future of the working woman.

It is true that women tend to take most jobs that are typically stereotyped as a "female occupation" such as a retail position in a clothing store, or a nurse in the hospital. Most females, and especially males, perceive such occupations as a nurse and a retail associate as a more feminine job. Instead of being a nurse, a male will more likely apply for a doctor's position in that field. "Men in the United States still outnumber women in doctoral and professional programs, but both look likely to change in the coming years. More women than men now graduate as pharmacists and veterinarians."(Williams, pg 59) As far as Law graduates go, women and men are neck and neck, while the gap between the genders has narrowed in medical schools nationwide. So it is possible that we may be seeing more male nurses, and the stereotype on male nurses may change.

At the undergraduate level, 10 percent more women go to college these days than men. Last year, in 2004, that translated into about 180,000 fewer men than women. There is also a huge difference between the number of male graduates to the number of female graduates. This is largely due to the high dropout rate in college amongst male students. Given some time, maybe within the next decade or so, the gap between male grads versus women grads could be astonishing.

Even though more and more women are attending post-secondary institutions every year, and despite the high graduation percentage of women, female applicants still receive lower wages than male applicants for the same position. Female professionals are more likely to start at a lower level and take home smaller paychecks

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