Do women really have a choice? Unpaid extra work and unfair division of home tasks: Drowning in the sea of Covid-19 without a lifejacket

Proceedings of The 2nd International Conference on Gender Studies and Sexuality

Year: 2022

DOI:

[PDF]

Do women really have a choice? Unpaid extra work and unfair division of home tasks: Drowning in the sea of Covid-19 without a lifejacket

Luciana Morilas

 

ABSTRACT: 

The pandemic caused by COVID-19 aggravated the overload of unpaid work (household tasks and family care) women are expected to shoulder. While some argue this is their choice, we understand that following archaic standards is accepting the familiar and community oppression rather than a decision. Even though international regulation attempts to solve the unpaid work problem, the pandemics has affected women more seriously, rising unemployment and domestic violence. Working from home became a reality, pushing women to deal with working and household activities at the same time in an environment not prepared for this. While some argue this is an advantage, we see unpaid extra work added to women’s routine. According to UN research, at the height of the pandemic more than 760 million girls worldwide were out of school, most of them invested in the responsibility for household chores, one of the reasons why these students had limited dedication to remote learning activities. Access to technological devices and dealing with them also added extra burden. In the case of Brazilian indigenous people, the challenge to learn how to use the digital devices was added to taking care of their families in a decreasing presence of governmental assistance. We develop a bibliographic study on how the pandemics affected student, worker and indigenous women. We study how existing international regulation and national Brazilian law can protect – or not – women in the post-pandemic world and, besides describing the current scenario, we try to indicate possible alternatives to improve the situation.

keywords: Gender gap, Equality, Indigenous people, Technology, Oppression.