Post Content

Women represent nearly half of the labor force in Massachusetts, yet they are woefully under-represented in board rooms, elected office and private sector management. Many women face challenging choices about advancing their careers or meeting expectations at home.

The Boston Club recently released a report which found that only 13.8% of the directors of Massachusetts’ 100 largest public companies are women. Just 1.5% of all directors at these companies are women of color, and the majority of these companies have no female executive officers. 

In a recent Pew Research study, 51% of working mothers said that being a working mother has made it more difficult to advance their careers. Only sixteen percent of working fathers made the same statement.  The study also found that among parents, women are more likely than men to have experienced career interruptions related to family, and are more likely to report that having to take those breaks has hurt their career.

To improve the outcome for women in the workplace, Governor Patrick has made a commitment for advancing women across the economic spectrum by launching the Women in the Workforce Initiative (watch video below).  This initiative is an important step in recognizing the key role women play in the economic competitiveness of the Commonwealth. It also draws attention to the challenges women face in trying to reach the highest rungs on the corporate ladder or those earning an hourly wage who often lack the flexibility needed to balance work and family.

Governor Patrick has led by example for advancing women in his Administration. His Administration has demonstrated that it is possible to find talented, qualified women to lead in senior positions and that substantial change can be made in a short period of time when the leader of an organization is committed to make change. As of last November, more than half of all managers and 49% of senior managers within the Executive branch were women.

The Governor is taking a two-pronged approach in tackling the issues facing working women in the Commonwealth by:

  • Creating women leadership fellowships
  • Charging a task force with making recommendations on what the state can do as an employer to advance women in the workplace.

Massachusetts already has some of the best family friendly benefits in the country such as alternative work options and paid parental leave—benefits that give women more flexibility in balancing their home life and their career.  Governor Patrick believes we can do more to help women achieve workplace equality and ensure equal access to services and opportunity across the economic spectrum, and wants to challenge the private sector to help women thrive, succeed and lead by taking a cue from his Administration.

Further details on the initiative will be released soon.


Written By:

Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development

Tags: , ,

Recent Posts

National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week posted on Oct 26

National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week

Hire only Licensed Lead-Safe Renovation Contractors to perform renovation, repair, or painting work if you own a home or operate a child-occupied facility built prior to 1978. National Lead Poisoning Prevention week is October 23-29, 2016. This year’s theme is “Lead-Free Kids for a Healthy   …Continue Reading National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week

Fall River Career Center fulfilling Amazon’s need for workers posted on Sep 7

Fall River Career Center fulfilling Amazon’s need for workers

FALL RIVER, MA, SEPTEMBER 7, 2016….When Amazon opens its new 1-million-square foot fulfillment center this month the online retailer will not be scrambling to hire new employees. The operation will be fully staffed with nearly 500 new hires recruited through the Fall River Career Center.   …Continue Reading Fall River Career Center fulfilling Amazon’s need for workers

YouthWorks Gives Teens Opportunities to Grow posted on Aug 10

YouthWorks Gives Teens Opportunities to Grow

BEVERLY, MA, AUGUST 1, 2016….. If 18-year-old Esmayle Gomez did not have a summer job planting crops at the Long Hill Farm in Beverly, through the YouthWorks program, he would most likely spend his days watching TV, playing on his phone, and eating junk food,   …Continue Reading YouthWorks Gives Teens Opportunities to Grow