Never Done

On average, women will work 4 years more than men during course of a lifetime

ndian women labourers walk back home after a day of work in a paddy field near Velankanni in the Nagapattinam district of India's southern state of Tamil Nadu. (PRAKASH SINGH/AFP/Getty Images)

A new report by charity ActionAid, presented at the U.N. General Assembly on Thursday, claims that the average woman who enters the job market today, will do about four years more work than her male peers over her working lifetime. The report is meant to highlight the disproportionately heavy burden women carry when it comes to unpaid labor — including all household duties and care work for their family or community. This prevents them from pursuing other activities, such as working for additional income, rest, leisure, and political activities. “We do not mean to suggest that all unpaid work, including unpaid care work, should be remunerated, or to ascribe a monetary value to unpaid care, which includes what we believe to be intrinsically invaluable activities, such as loving and nurturing children and family,” said Girish Menon, chief executive of ActionAid U.K. “Rather, ActionAid believes women’s unpaid work should be recognized, reduced and redistributed – between women and men, and between the household and the state.” Women’s labor in and outside the home, the charity argues, is undervalued and largely invisible even though it is essential to the world economy. For this reason, the group is calling on the governments (specifically those of developing countries) to pass more legislation addressing this issue, including broader access to quality public care, equal pay, family-friendly workplace policies and minimum living wages.

Read the full story at The Guardian.

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