HR Strange But True!
March 10, 2004

We all know that HR is never dull, but sometimes it can get downright strange...

For highly educated women, weight matters

New research from Finland that suggests weight is a pay barrier for certain women.

The study found that obese women who are highly educated earn about 30 percent less -- a difference of at least $5,000 a year -- than normal-weight or even plump women, the Associated Press reports. When analyzed by occupation, women with white-collar jobs earned less if they were obese.

On the other hand, obesity had little or no effect on pay if women were poorly educated, manual workers or self-employed.

And obesity had no statistically significant effect on men's pay, the study found.

"This suggests that, socio-economically, obesity is not as stigmatizing for men as it is for women," concluded the University of Helsinki researchers.

The researchers couldn't explain why this happens, or why there was a bigger effect on some women, except to say the pressure on women to be thin may be strongest among higher socio-economic classes.

The study has been published in the American Journal of Public Health.

Source: Associated Press, via Yahoo!

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