Understanding Poverty Among Women: Income And Time Poverty And The Pressures Of Care Work

The unequal distribution of unpaid care and domestic work, between women and men and between families and societies more broadly, is a key source of economic disadvantage for women. According to data from 90 countries, women devote on average around three times more hours per day to unpaid care and domestic work than men. Owing to the resulting time constraints, women participate less in paid work compared with men and, when they do engage in paid work, they are more likely to engage in lower-quality and lower-paying jobs that can be more easily combined with unpaid care and domestic work responsibilities. Moreover, because of the combined responsibility of paid work and unpaid care and domestic work, women have limited time remaining for education, rest and leisure. As recognized at the sixty-third session of the Commission on the Status of Women, the inadequate provisioning of public services and sustainable infrastructure further intensifies the constraints on women’s income and time. For poor women and girls and those belonging to marginalized groups, the deprivation of access to public services and infrastructure is particularly acute.

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