We demand a living wage for mothers and other carers because:
· Every worker is entitled to a living wage. Women do 2/3 of the world’s work – in the home, on the land and in the community – but most of this work is unwaged.
· Women are the primary carers everywhere in the world, fighting for the survival and well-being of children and sick, disabled and elderly people, in the home and outside, in peace as in war. Women grow most of the world’s food.
· Most carers, starting with mothers, get no wages and aren’t considered workers.
· Many carers are themselves disabled; many are children caring for younger ones or for their disabled parents; many are grandparents leaving retirement to care for their children’s children.
· Caring is demanding work but the skills it requires are undervalued even in the job market – domestic work, homecare, childcare and even nursing are low paid.
· Valuing caring work would help to close the income gap between women and men. It would also draw more men into caring.
· Financial dependence when caring work is unwaged often traps women in violent relationships.
· Many mothers do several jobs and have to fit time with their children around their job – this is exhausting and stressful for all.
· When mothers are impoverished and overworked, children suffer: hunger, ill-health, violence and exploitation.
· Mothers who have to return to other work soon after childbirth are less likely to breastfeed.
· Workers who take time off to care for children or other loved ones, lose pay, promotion, social security and future pension.
· Devaluing caring work devalues people, relationships and life itself.
· Investing in carers redirects economic and social policies towards survival, health and well-being – for every individual and for the planet which sustains us all.
Caring for others is the foundation of every society, yet this work, done mostly by women, is devalued and underfunded.We demand that:1. Every worker be paid a living wage, including mothers and other carers.
2. National and international budgets redirect financial support and resources to mothers and other carers.
Sponsored by: Every Mother is a Working Mother Coalition (US) ● International Wages for Housework Campaign ● Military Families Speak Out (US) ● Nawa Chhattisgarh Mahila Samiti (India) ● Payday men’s network ● Federacion Sindical de Trabajadoras y Trabajadores del Hogar (Peru) ● Single Mothers’ Self-Defence ● Welfare Warriors (US) ● WinVisible (women with visible and invisible disabilities)
UK endorsers (June 2015): All African Women’s Group ● Black Women’s Rape Action Project ● Brighton Feminist Collective ● Caribbean Labour Solidarity ● Christopher Alder Family Campaign ● Disabled People Against Cuts ● English Collective of Prostitutes ● Food for All (Camden) ● Hammersmith & Fulham Coalition Against Cuts ● Independent Catholic News ● International Women Count Network ● Kilburn Unemployed Workers Group ● Lactation Consultants GB ● Legal Action for Women ● London Socialist Film Co-op ● Mammas Community Breastfeeding Support Project ● Mothers at Home Matter ● Queer Strike ● Scottish Kinship Care Alliance ● Scottish Prostitute Education Project (SCOTPEP) ● Sex Worker Open University ● Taxpayers Against Poverty ● Women Against Rape ● x:talk
Some prominent individuals: Mumia Abu-Jamal ● Melissa Benn ● Joanna Biggs ● Julia Bradley ● Margaret Busby ● Bob Crow ● Greg Foxsmith ● David Graber ● Eric Huntley ● Selma James ● Bruce Kent ● Sheila Kitzinger ● Ken Loach ● John McDonnell MP ● Martina Navratilova ● Trenton Oldfield ● Susie Orbach ● Gareth Peirce ● Greg Philo (Glasgow Media Group) ● Kate Pickett ● Dame Philippa Russell, Chair Standing Commission on Carers ● Christina Sammoutis ● Emma Thompson ● Vivienne Westwood ● Zoe Williams ● Walter Wolfgang ● Richard Wilkinson ● Matt Wrack
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