Invest in a caring society. A living wage for mothers and other carers.
Mothers are the primary carers everywhere in the world. Caring for children, sick, disabled and elderly people is work vital to society.
Carers are impoverished. Income Support is being abolished. Child Benefit, society’s commitment to children, is no longer universal. Carer’s Allowance is insultingly low and most carers don’t even qualify. 200,000 care workers are denied the minimum wage.
When mothers are impoverished, children suffer: hunger, ill-health, and more often taken into care.
Mothers are told they are ‘workless’ and that earning is more important than caring. They are pushed into jobs regardless of hours, pay or childcare provision. The right to have children is being challenged.
Mothers are forced into unpaid work to ‘earn’ their benefits (‘workfare’). ‘Workfare’ bypasses the minimum wage, driving down all wages, especially women’s, and undermining pay equity.
Having to fit caring around jobs results in overwork, exhaustion and ill-health. Grandparents must often leave retirement to help.
Employed mothers (or fathers) who take time off to care for children or relatives, lose pay, promotion and future pension.
When caring work is devalued, people, relationships and life itself are devalued. The result is inequity and social neglect, but also environmental destruction and war.
Demanding time and resources for caring aims to redirect economic and social policies towards people and the planet, and away from the uncaring market.
1. Caring is recognised as vital work for the whole society.
2. All carers, including mothers, are paid a living wage for this indispensable work, including paid time off.
(If you are signing on behalf of an organisation, please indicate so in the last name box.)
Signed by: Bob Crow, Martina Navratilova, Nina Power