Can Snow Clearing Be Sexist?

Mar 6, 2020 12:15 PM ET
Blog

In honor of International Women's Day 2020 #IWD (Sunday, March 8), FSG's gender team shares thoughts on gender equity:

Sweden recently realized that their snow clearing routine was typically benefiting men over women. In the winter, snow was cleared first on main roads leading into the city, benefiting commuters—who were mostly men. Foot- and cycle-paths were cleared last—not so good for pedestrians and cyclists, who were very often women traveling with children in pushchairs.

There was a cost to all this: 79% of pedestrian injuries occurred in winter, of which 69% were women. By clearing paths first, accidents decreased by half and saved the local government money.

So, why were women in Sweden suffering a disproportionate amount of winter injuries?

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