The pandemic has done a real number on the American workforce. But no demographic has been more affected than women. They’ve lost the most jobs and faced the most burnout. And we’ve leaned on them heavily to get us through the past year-plus. In this podcast, we bring you stories from six women in Las Vegas, one of the hardest hit economies in the country. Through them, we see the depth of the challenges women have faced – and what their strength, resilience, and openness to reinvention show us about how to move forward. Hosted and produced by Jessica Mendoza and Samantha Laine Perfas. Visit csmonitor.com/stronger to learn more.
While millions of women lost or left their jobs in the pandemic, college student Jennifer Ashley Ciballos and her sister Jaelynn, a high school senior, faced a different problem: They had to start working to keep their multigenerational household afloat. For more than a year, they’ve juggled their studies with long hours at low-wage jobs to pay the rent and other bills. Their story shows the lengths women go to support the people they love – even if it means putting their own dreams on hold. Hosted by Jessica Mendoza and Samantha Laine Perfas.
Leslie Stevenson had been resisting burnout for years. Though she loves being a teacher, the daily grind of blurred boundaries, after-hours demands, and lack of community support had made it harder and harder to stay on. The pivot to remote and hybrid learning only made things worse for her. Now, as the US prepares for its first post-pandemic school year, she’s wondering: Is the work still worth it? Hosted by Jessica Mendoza and Samantha Laine Perfas.
The Service Worker
When Mariza Rocha lost her job as a utility porter at The STRAT Hotel in March 2020, she turned to her union. Through the organization, she was able to get unemployment benefits and food assistance. And when she was diagnosed with COVID-19, the union fought for compensation for her and others like her. Now she’s convinced she wouldn’t have survived the pandemic without that community help. In this episode, we see how a support network can be vital in helping people face crises – and find their voice. Hosted by Jessica Mendoza and Samantha Laine Perfas.
The pandemic is not Yarleny Roa-Dugan’s first trial by fire. But it's the hardest she’s faced by far. A nurse and mother of two, she's come up against everything that parents and frontline workers have been having to deal with. And when members of her own family were diagnosed with COVID-19, she had to care for them while running the household on her own. Despite all that, she’s determined not just to survive – but to come out of this period better than ever. Hosted by Jessica Mendoza and Samantha Laine Perfas.
Christine Hudman Pardy had made it. After decades of touring on and off Broadway, she was performing in a nightly show she loved, for a company that paid well and let her go home to her kids. Then the pandemic hit. Her show closed for good – and so did her husband’s. After more than a year without work, she’s asking herself: What’s next? When the odds seem to be against you, how do you keep on dreaming and growing? Hosted by Jessica Mendoza and Samantha Laine Perfas.
Women, Work, and the Pandemic
The numbers were grim: 2.3 million women pushed out of the workforce between March 2020 and March 2021. A generation’s worth of progress in women’s workforce participation lost, by some accounts. Women of color hit especially hard. Now, as the U.S. recovers from the pandemic, it’s time to look not only at what we’ve lost, but also at what we’ve learned. Can we rethink how and when we work to better support women? Hosted by Jessica Mendoza and Samantha Laine Perfas.
Stronger is STRONG reporting!
Really a phenomenal podcast that while acknowledging the challenges women have been facing during the pandemic, focuses on their resilience and strength. I found this to be optimistic and hopeful. Worth a listen!
Important topic, great hosts and all really well put together! Can’t wait to hear more.
Inspiring / empowering / hopeful
The depth of doing a series in one city is very powerful, and these women are truly an inspiration.
These ladies are demonstrating leadership in action.