Does poverty in Singapore have a woman's face?
One of the most memorable jokes from comedian Ali Wong's stand-up special on Netflix was this gem of an observation: "A lot of people like to ask me 'Ali, how on earth do you balance family and career?' Men never get asked that question. Because they don't."
No truer words have been spoken thus far. It's a double standard working mothers face everywhere, whether you're at the top of the food chain, or struggling to make ends meet. This universal tussle between work and care faced by women has led AWARE Singapore to organise a panel titled 'Poverty has a woman's face'.
Fuelled by Dr. Teo You Yenn's best-selling book, This Is What Inequality Looks Like, the gender equality advocacy group will ask the much-needed questions in their panel: How does inequality play out in women's lives? How does it grip mothers in particular, who often balance work, home and care responsibilities, all while striving for economic security?
AWARE Singapore's report, 'Why Are You Not Working', looks at this through interviews with 47 mothers from low-income households as they explain their challenges juggling both work and home. The panel pools together Shailey Hingorani, Head of Advocacy and Research at AWARE, Dr. Teo, Carrie Tan, Executive Director of Daughters Of Tomorrow (a charity organisation supporting low-income women), and Siti Aishah, a participant of AWARE's research and a mother of three working as an assistant admin officer.
Moderated by Ng Kok Hoe, Assistant Professor at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, the panel discussion hopes to provide both perspectives and solutions. If this issue resonates deeply with you and the women you hold dear in your life, it's time to join the conversation.