The need for massive investment in the care economy has been brutally laid bare by the coronavirus pandemic. In a question of weeks, care facilities across continents were brought to the brink of collapse as rooms overfilled and care professionals found themselves unequipped.
Frontline care workers, mostly women active in both the formal and informal economy, are still paying the highest price. While working in unsafe and inadequate conditions, they put their health and lives at risk to protect the most vulnerable among us.
Today, more than two years since the start of the pandemic, a majority of countries in the world are still not making the necessary investments in this sector.
Therefore, in a little less than seven weeks, we will make sure that all participants in the UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) hear about workers’ views on the role of care in achieving a gender-transformative recovery that creates millions of new jobs and boosts women’s economic participation.
At the HLPF, we will bring to the discussion the six demands that workers have for a New Social Contract with SDG 8 at its core, rooted in a gender-transformative agenda: (1) decent, climate-friendly jobs with just transition; (2) rights for all workers; (3) minimum living wages; (4) universal social protection for all; (5) equality to end all discrimination; and (6) inclusion to ensure the empowerment of developing countries.
We will strongly stress that
✔️ accessible, well-equipped and properly staffed care services are vital to building equitable, inclusive and sustainable societies;
✔️ doubling current investments in the care sector can create 269 million new jobs by 2030, supporting women’s entry in the labour market and promoting shared responsibility within families; and
✔️ governments and employers must commit to ensuring that all care jobs are decent, with safe working conditions, adequate salaries – including minimum living wages and equal pay for work of equal value – and covered by social protection.
Doubling current investments in the care economy will contribute to a gender-transformative recovery to build inclusive and sustainable societies.
📅 UPCOMING HLPF EVENTS, 05-15 JULY 2022
With the financial assistance of the European Union. The contents of this newsletter are the sole responsibility of the ITUC and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union.