The Real Marshall Plan For Moms Is Getting Them Back To Work

Connecting the Dots – #YesThisIsAnArtsStory Repost from Ms. Magazine

Simona Grace | 01 February 2021

Last week, 50 prominent women placed a full-page paid ad in the New York Times calling attention to the issues that continue to disproportionately affect working mothers during this pandemic. The women asked President Biden to implement a “Marshall Plan for Moms” and pay mothers $2,400 a month for their “unpaid labor.”

“It’s time to put a dollar figure on our labor. Motherhood isn’t a favor and it’s not a luxury. It’s a job,” the Marshall Plan for Moms website states.

It is undeniable that working mothers are shouldering the brunt of the C0VID-19 pandemic. However, paying mothers to stay home will not lead us toward recovery—it will put women at an even greater disadvantage in the long run and have negative repercussions on the American economy. The only way to build back better and revive our economy is by getting women back to work.

The original Marshall Plan created after World War II fought against poverty and unemployment and aimed to create conditions for democratic institutions to survive. The plan was successful in accelerating economic growth because it invested in job creation that put people back to work.

Currently, when lawmakers across party lines can’t agree on putting money in the pockets of Americans facing hunger, poverty and eviction, a policy focused solely on compensating mothers will widen the divide across gender lines. Instead, we need public investment in job creation to lead us out of this recession.

Rather than paying mothers to stay home in the short run, we should deploy more resources for the safe reopening of our schools and continue to fund programs such as the paycheck protection program (PPP) to prevent further job losses in hard hit industries that employ more women and women of color. According to the Treasury Department, the PPP saved over 13 million American jobs.

A monthly stipend of $2,400 for female caregivers would only serve as a stop gap measure for lost income—not to mention the loss of retirement, social security, and savings that women will continue to rack up as long as they are out of the work force.