#TimeToCare (Global Report)

#TimeToCare (Global Report)

  • 16 Jan, 2020

Economic inequality is out of control. In 2019, the world’s billionaires, only 2,153 people,
had more wealth than 4.6 billion people. The richest 22 men in the world own more
wealth than all the women in Africa.2 These extremes of wealth exist alongside great
poverty. New World Bank estimates show that almost half of the world’s population lives
on less than $5.50 a day, and the rate of poverty reduction has halved since 2013.

This great divide is based on a flawed and sexist economic system. This broken
economic model has accumulated vast wealth and power into the hands of a rich few, in
part by exploiting the labour of women and girls, and systematically violating their rights.
At the top of the global economy a small elite are unimaginably rich. Their wealth grows
exponentially over time, with little effort, and regardless of whether they add value to

Meanwhile, at the bottom of the economy, women and girls, especially women and girls
living in poverty and from marginalized groups, are putting in 12.5 billion hours every day
of care work for free,4 and countless more for poverty wages. Their work is essential to
our communities. It underpins thriving families and a healthy and productive workforce.

Oxfam has calculated that this work adds value to the economy of at least $10.8 trillion.5
This figure, while huge, is an underestimate, and the true figure is far higher. Yet most of
the financial benefits accrue to the richest, the majority of whom are men. This unjust
system exploits and marginalizes the poorest women and girls, while increasing the
wealth and power of a rich elite.

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