|The Wilson Center (2020)|
The public health crisis and lockdown are exacerbating existing disparities and challenges women face on a daily basis. These challenges and disparities include unequal access to the labor market, low quality jobs in the informal sector, lack of social protections such as healthcare and social security, occupational segregation, the excess burden of care work in the home, and domestic violence. The speakers highlighted that despite general awareness of the challenges women face on a daily basis, the COVID-19 policies and assistance programs developed by national and regional institutions do not target women to receive benefits - or simply leave them out by adopting eligibility requirements most women cannot meet.
All three of the speakers are doing cutting-edge work that is worth checking out.
- Adriana Quiñones of UN Women is leading the UN's Put an End to Domestic Violence campaign in partnership with women's rights advocacy groups in Guatemala;
- Karina Batthyani of the Latin American Council of Social Sciences just put out an analysis of the impact of COVID-19 on women's care work; and
- Claudia Piras and her colleagues at the Inter-American Development Bank just put out a brand new working paper on female labor participation and its impact on growth in Latin America.
The panel was to the point with lots of timely and sobering information packed in. Women in Latin America are suffering during this crisis and policy makers at the national and international level need to act now.