Care Economies in Context

Policy Briefs

Study by the ILO shows the Importance of Closing Gaps in Leaves and Care Services for Job Creation

The ILO Latin America and Caribbean Regional Office recently produced a report assessing maternity protection, leave and care service policies across 32 countries. The study advocates for expanded coverage of childcare leaves and breastfeeding breaks, highlighting the universalization of quality childcare and long-term services as a means to create millions of jobs, predominantly benefiting women.

The ILO study reveals that investing in policies that support universal childcare leaves, breastfeeding breaks, childcare services, and long-term care services in seven Latin American countries could generate 25.8 million direct and indirect jobs. The majority of these jobs (9 out of 10) would be formal and about 8 out of 10 would be occupied by women.

“It is urgent to invest in transformative care policies to generate decent work in the care sector, strengthen social protection systems and contribute to closing gender gaps in the labour market and in the distribution of care work.”

Paz Arancibia, ILO gender specialist for Latin America and the Caribbean

The report calls for urgent investment in care policies to promote decent work in the care sector, strengthen social protection systems, and address gender gaps in the labour market and care work distribution. The study also highlights the challenges faced by countries in the region in terms of maternity, paternity, and parental leaves, with variations in duration, pecuniary benefits, and financing.

The report is available in Spanish.