Conservation areas: value the care of the little ones

Espacios de protección: poner en valor el cuidado de los más chicos

Two apparently unconnected episodes. First: A two-year-old baby named Dante falls asleep in the “filled field” of the garden “D”e paso, paseo”, in La Plata, where her parents drop her off to go to work every day. No one noticed that the baby was snoring among the bunnies, so when closing time came, they closed the place… Dante is inside. His father came late to call him and the baby He found her locked up. They had to call the fire brigade to release her. And that could have been a tragedy, yes. Part two: Organized by the Economic Commission from 7 to 11 November Latin America (CEPAL) and UN Women in Latin America and in the Caribbean XV. The name and – if you want – the complex concepts involved, the translation is very simple, because after all – for Dante, for Dante’s grandparents, for Dante’s relatives, and for people close to Dante – it’s about creating . have any illness or disability that guarantees it – a support system. Your help. Argentina already has this project. It’s called caring as equity and it was presented to Congress in May of this year. But since then lies on three commissions that he must treat himself. Almost like Dante among stuffed animals.

What is that project about? Simple: A complex plot combining places, laws, actors and services. And this ranges from the creation of infrastructure such as day-care centers and nurseries (currently scarce in Buenos Aires, almost nonexistent in some provinces) to extended licenses for parents (in some cases they only have two days to get a newborn). wider and more qualified delivery of care services and many other things that still seem like a delusion today. Or at the very least, privileges only available to overdeveloped economies like the Scandinavian countries. However, various experiences in the region so far show that the care sector can also be a driver of economic development.

WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR CARE? As reflected during the four days that the conference lasted, successful public care policies have their experience, and not just in Europe. It exists in Uruguay, Mexico, Costa Rica, Chile.. Attempts are made, with more or less improvement, to make care go from being a “problem” of families to become everyone’s responsibility (because, ultimately, any society that wants to sustain itself over time needs people caring for the children, the sick, the old) progress in all Latin America. Especially after As the Covid-19 pandemic has underscored, it has become clear that care is at the center of all societies. The problem is that all those hours spent taking children to and from school, taking elderly parents to the doctor, checking homework, preparing meals or shopping are actually invisible hours. Or rather: invisible hours, transparent time, to which someone—almost always a woman, a mother, a grandmother, or a lady—has been hired for that purpose—invisible hours that no one has thought to pay for. This is exactly why, for several years, some economists in many countries of the world set out to cash in on the contribution of women to the economies of their own countries. And the results were shocking.

VALUE OF NOT VALUABLE. This is how it has been understood that various countries in the region account for between 15 and 28% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) with women’s unpaid working hours. As an ECLAC document points out, “currently 10 countries in Turkey Latin America and the Caribbean calculate the monetary contribution of unpaid labor in households. Some estimates made in the region show that such jobs are worth between 15.9% and 27.6% of GDP. On average, 74 percent of this contribution is made by women. And as demonstrated at the last conference, with the current scenario of overwork and exhaustion for women and the increasing demand for care that a society as old as ours will imply in the future, care is the most logical way. A modification engine that is truly transformative rather than cosmetic.

For this very reason, in his speech at the conference, José Manuel Salazar-Xirinachs, ECLAC Secretary General, “Considering the very significant increase in care demand expected due to the aging of the population, it is clear that fiscal policies in the region will face a very significant challenge in the coming years. Open up financial space to provide the additional resources needed to finance the expansion of care networks”. Is there any truth in all this issue between the ironic and the brutal? To implement a comprehensive system of national care (SINCA) in Argentina, it would be sufficient for the State to decide to review some tax exemptions. In fact, if only the judges started paying Profits, the system would already have funds.

But at the same time, ECLAC’s highest representative We are at a turning point as countries and regions. This is a time for bold, transformative policies that really move the needles of development, not timid, gradual changes.” In this sense, the creation of a national, universal and unpaid care system will allow care work not only to fall on families, as is already the case in Uruguay, but also to create quality jobs, truly safe care spaces and above all. , a new vision in this regard: shared responsibility. Until then, Argentine Lacer will continue to dream among stuffed animals as before, until the firefighters arrive.

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Written by Adem

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