Will women be forced into unpaid care roles?
They say a woman’s work is never done. Some believe that after Brexit that might be truer than ever. According to a leaked Department of Health dossier, a no-deal Brexit would mean a disastrous shortfall in care staff, which would force women out of the office and into unpaid social care roles, looking after elderly parents.
Many were infuriated by headlines such as “Women will have to give up work after Brexit”, and are asking why men don’t have the same duty of care. Their anger, while valid, misses the point. The headlines were clumsily worded, certainly; sexist, arguably. But were they true?
There are an estimated 6.5 million people in the UK caring for others, 40 per cent of whom are informally looking after an elderly or sick relative. The majority of those carers are women because, with women already shouldering the burden of childcare and enduring the pain of the gender pay gap, it’s often simply more economically sensible for a woman to cut her hours in the workplace further when care responsibilities increase.
To read more visit the Independent website.