Economic justice for the heroes of coronavirus

To: Ministers responsible for labour and social affairs

We will not get through the coronavirus crisis without care workers: health care workers, personal care workers, domestic care workers. People who tend to children, dependents, the sick and the elderly when society is in lockdown.

These care workers are predominantly underpaid women. [1] In many countries in Europe, the vast majority of domestic care workers are migrants. [2] In care work, like in all sectors that predominantly employ women, professional competences and qualifications necessary to perform those essential tasks are undervalued in our societies, thus leading to underpaid and unpaid work.

With so much public gratitude towards the “heroes of coronavirus”, we have the chance to collectively stand up for those protecting us. It’s time our societies take concrete steps to show that we value care work. Social inequalities resulting from years of austerity policies can be addressed with government action on national and European levels. This is a matter of political will.

We, the undersigned, expect the European Union and national governments put care work at the centre of our social and economic policies. We demand:

  • That care workers earn at least the average wage in every European country
  • That there is full transparency on the gender pay gap in Europe as well as concrete measures to close the gap, in line with the principle of equal pay for work of equal value
  • That everyone taking care of a relative or doing other informal care work is entitled to care credits, which means that this work is recognised and that carers can access social security
  • That significant public investments are made in order to boost the number of care jobs, especially as the population continues to age and the need for different types of care is increasing
  • That there is more European coordination around care and that EU gains competences in social matters


Sources: [1] and [2]

- Supporters

Goal 3,000


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