DMPQ-Do you agree that Govt should make laws to make Domestic work a paid work ?

Recently various parties in their manifestos promised various forms of payment to homemakers, thus putting the spotlight on the unpaid domestic work done by women.

Women everywhere carry a disproportionately higher burden of unpaid work, namely, unpaid domestic services as well as unpaid care of children. Though this work contributes to overall well-being at the household level and collectively at the national level, it is invisible in the national database and particularly in national policies.

Unpaid care work, according to the OECD, refers to all unpaid services provided within a household for its members, including care of persons, housework and voluntary community work. These activities are considered work because theoretically one could pay a third person to perform them.

men’s Unpaid Work The all-India Time Use Survey (2019) says that 81% of females (six years and above) and 26% of males participate in unpaid domestic work. This work is repetitive, boring and frequently drudgery — a 24-hour job without remuneration, promotions or retirement benefits.

It restricts opportunities for women in the economy and in life. It is imposed on them by patriarchal norms, which are the roots of all pervasive gender inequalities. This unequal division of unpaid work between women and men is unfair and unjust and it deprives women of equal opportunities as men.

For political parties to recognise this work is a positive development, and the demand for wages for housewives has emerged from this concern. Its implementation may create problems such as affordability of the government and calculation of the amounts. These wages may confirm unpaid work as women’s work only, which would deny opportunities to women in the wider world. Payment of pension to old women (60+ years) may be a better idea to compensate them for their unpaid work.

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