How much of the pandemic weight of child care has fallen on women vs. men? Œ œ Current events in Commerce and Economics

A new study Friday found that last year women took an average of three hours of unpaid childcare compared to every hour men took.

Demands for childcare at home were raised during the pandemic, but men and women did not share the weight equally.

Overall, women took 173 more hours of care for unpaid children last year, compared to 59 hours more for men, a study released Friday by the Center for Global Development, a nonprofit, he found. The gap has widened in middle- and low-income countries, where women care for children more than three times as long as men.

Women have felt many of the worst economic effects of the pandemic, including an estimated $ 800 billion in lost income, largely due to increased demands on their time at home. The Covid-19 recession has blunted gains in equal pay, participation in the female workforce, and unemployment, particularly among black and Latino women in the United States Global job loss rates among women were about 1.8 times larger than those among men, according to a McKinsey & Co. esteem. And while American workers return to office, mothers are more likely than fathers and women without children to be out of work.

Charles Kenny, a former colleague of the Center for Global Development and one of the study’s authors, said the pandemic only exposed existing gender disparities. In 2017, a report from the Pew Research Center found that mothers did more than twice as much care for children as fathers in the United States around the globe, the gap varies widely, but an OECD survey found that women spend an average of three to six hours in treatment, compared to an average of 30 minutes to two hours for men.

“Every year, year after year out there, there are trillions of hours of unpaid care work being done, mostly by women,” she said. “We’re not going to go into a world that sees gender equality until the weight is more evenly distributed.”

The study used UNESCO and OECD figures to measure the number of children at home from school and the average time men and women in different countries spent caring for children without pay before school. pandemic. In India, where the closure of schools adds 176 billion hours of childcare, the study estimated that women assumed more than 10 times the weight of men.

Some governments have tried to help families in need of childcare. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has proposed a measure that aims to lower the cost of crèche to $ 10 C a day. Australian lawmakers are considering a budget that could pour $ 1.7 billion in childcare subsidies, eliminating annual caps for support for many families and increasing payments to families with more children. The U.S. government, for its part, has allocated $ 53 billion to prevent the closure of day centers during the pandemic.

In some places, those measures were not enough to prevent women from leaving the workplace or to return to work. And when economies reopen and emergency budgets fall, Kenny has warned that these disparities will not disappear either.

“Exhaustion, stress on families – they don’t go away just when the kids go back to school,” he said. “That could be something that has a pretty long shadow.”

(Updates in the fourth paragraph with more information on pre-pandemic child care gaps.)

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