In 2001, 64 percent of mothers with children under the age of six, and 78 percent of mothers with children ages six to seventeen were in the labor force.
The rapid influx of women into the labor force that began in the 1970s was marked by the confidence of many women in their ability to successfully pursue a career while meeting the needs of their children.
Fabric supplies were scarce and the men had more important matters drawing them away from the labor force.
The leading export sectors in South America, including the flower industry, use a predominantly female labor force.
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