Changing narratives about unpaid care work and the economy

03.07.21

UN New York / HLPF - Register now to join us virtually at this year’s High Level Political Forum side-event.

MMM Side-event

Changing narratives about unpaid care work and the economy

July 14 –  7:30-9:00 am New York / 1:30-3:00 pm Paris

Register here

Event Flyer

Programme & Speakers

Speakers’ bios

Introductions

Moderator:

Part 1 – Changing the narrative on unpaid family care work in families and workplaces

  • Gary Barker, Founder and CEO, Promundo Global – on the importance of sharing the care within families, not only for redistribution, but also as a way to changing the view that men have on the value of this work, and the potential multiplier effect it can have on the wellbeing of every family member, gender equality, and a more caring society @Promundo_US
  • Sonia Malaspina, Director, Human Resources South Europe, Danone Specialized Nutrition – to show how supporting workers with caregiving responsibilities, especially mothers, can, in the long term, be a win-win strategy for private companies and employees alike, and contribute to shifting perspectives on unpaid care work as being interrelated with paid work, as it develops skills which are also of value for a company @malaspinasonia

Part 2 – Changing the narrative on the economy, to empower mothers and children

  • Anam Parvez Butt, Gender Justice Research Lead and Policy Advisor,  Oxfam Great Britain – on “Time to care” & reframing care as a ‘social good” to bring about human economies caring for people @AnamParvezButt
  • Shahra Razavi, Director, ILO Social Protection Department – on changing the narrative on social protection so that it is considered an investment, not an expense to be minimized, and designed to support unpaid caregiving  @ILO @RazaviShahra

There will be simultaneous interpretation in French.

Background information

The pandemic has shown the critical importance of Care. It also exposed the challenges that women, particularly mothers, face in juggling paid work and unpaid Care responsibilities.

Feminist economists have long denounced the inequitable distribution of unpaid care work as a root cause of gender inequalities. At the heart of the problem is our current economic system, which considers unpaid care work – and nature – as endless and free commodities.

The Covid-19 crisis provides a unique opportunity to repurpose our economy, so that it serves the wellbeing of people and our planet.

Bringing about such systemic change begins by changing narratives and perspectives on both unpaid care work and the economy.

Our objectives:

  • Raise awareness on the multiple benefits of taking a more holistic approach to “work”, i.e. considering both paid and unpaid care work, by recognizing that unpaid care is indispensable work that sustains the economy and develops valuable skills
  • Make the case for a paradigm shift in our economic narrative around Care, so that in budgets, spending in care, education, health and family support, are considered as investments – not as expenses
  • Showcase examples of good policies/practices that can change perspectives and views on unpaid care work and our economy
  • Call on governments and international organisations to seize the opportunity to transform our economy and move from the short-term and exploitative “GDP growth” narrative to the wellbeing economy narrative

Event Concept Note

Register here

About the High Level Political Forum

The 2021 UN High Level Political Forum (HLPF – 6-15 July), will review progress of member states’ implementation of the 2030 development agenda, with a particular focus on SDG 1, 2, 3, 8, 10, 12, 13, 16 and 17. Our event relates to this year’s HLPF main theme: ‘Sustainable and resilient recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic that promotes the economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainable development: building an inclusive and effective path for the achievement of the 2030 Agenda in the context of the decade of action and delivery for sustainable development‘.

See also

Useful Resources

From the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights

From the Women’s Budget Group UK

From Promundo

From Danone & its partner Lifeed

From Oxfam

  • 2020 Report Time to Care
  • 2021 Report Public good or private wealth – Universal health, education and other public services reduce the gap between rich and poor, and between women and men. Fairer taxation of the wealthiest can help pay for them

From the ILO & UN Women

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