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Very Hard Life: Most Farm Women Work On The Farm, Off The Farm, And They Have Children Too

Elaine Kacsmar gets up on her farm every morning and drives down the road to her job as counsellor at the Esterhazy, Saskatchewan high school.

She is typical of Saskatchewan farm women who told Statistics Canada in the last census that they work off the farm more hours than on the farm these days. They are working in nursing homes, in town or municipal offices or in stores. And that doesn’t include the unpaid domestic work or community volunteer hours they put in. Women do two-thirds of all that work compared to Canadian men’s one-third share.

“You have to think of other careers,” said Kacsmar. “You need something else to fall back on because farming right now is so unreliable. You can’t base everything on the farm any more.” Kacsmar, who spends some of her precious spare time on tasks as a director of the Saskatchewan Women’s Agricultural Network, says, “women are very, very busy. Most of them are working off farm, they work on the farm and they have children.”

Farm Credit Agency To Seek Beefed-Up Powers

The Farm Credit Administration in Washington will take on new and tougher regulatory powers as part of efforts to save the federal agricultural credit system, bankers here were told.

Marvin Duncan, senior deputy governor of the Farm Credit Administration, outlined for the American Bankers Association’s annual convention here Monday plans that he said would turn the administration into “an arms-length, tough-minded regulator” of the massive and basically decentralized Farm Credit System.

The system includes a variety of components that conduct federal farm lending and assistance programs across the nation. Congress, the Reagan administration, and the Farm Credit Administration are considering ways to rescue the Farm Credit System, which has been hit hard by loan losses and a deteriorating loan portfolio.