This still compares favorably with the United Kingdom and the United States, with the United Kingdom achieving a participation rate of 41% for women of working age in 1944. However, in terms of women employed in war work, the British and German female participation rates were about the same in 1944, with the United States lagging behind.
The difficulties that the Third Reich faced in increasing the size of the work force was mitigated by reallocating manpower for work that supported the war effort. High wages in war industries drew hundreds of thousands, freeing men for military duties. Prisoners of war were also employed as laborers, freeing women for other jobs.29
The Third Reich allowed many roles for women, including combat. The SS-Helferinnen were considered part of the SS if they had received training in an SS Reichsschule but the rest of the workers were considered to be recruited for the SS and largely chosen from Nazi concentration camps. Women also served in auxiliary units of the navy (Kriegshelferinnen), the air force (Luftnachrichtenhelferinnen) and the army (Nachrichtenhelferin) .30 31 32 33 34 Hundreds of auxiliary women (Aufseherin) served as guardians for the SS in concentration camps, most of which were in Ravensbrück.35
Of the approximately six million Jews who were killed during the Holocaust, 2 million of them were women.36 The Nazis also committed mass murders against Roma women (and men) in the Auschwitz concentration camp, the Nazis murdered the women (and men) with disabilities in a program called Aktion T4 that was used for forced euthanasia, and they murdered women (and men) as alleged supporters in many Soviet towns in 1943-1944.37 In addition to the murders, the women in the Holocaust they were tortured by other means, such as rape, sexual harassment, being beaten, being the center of Nazi human experimentation, etc.37
In 1944-1945 more than 500,000 women were uniformed auxiliary volunteers of the German armed forces (Wehrmacht). About the same number served in the civilian air defense and 400,000 volunteered as nurses, many more replaced the men recruited into the war economy.31 In the Luftwaffe they served in combat roles helping to operate the anti-aircraft systems that shot down the fighters. Allied bombers.