He Agreement is a follow up to Buenos Aires Commitmentadopted in the XV Regional Conference on Women in Latin America and the Caribbean. In this intergovernmental forum, the countries emphasized the need to “adopt regulatory frameworks that guarantee the right to care through the implementation of comprehensive care policies and systems from the perspectives of gender, intersectionality, interculturality, and human rights.”
Care at the center of a new style of development
The Buenos Aires Commitment places care at the center of a new style of development that prioritizes the sustainability of life and the planet as the path to a transformative recovery with gender equality. Likewise, it recognizes the right of people to care, to be cared for and to exercise self-care.
This call to action arises from a 45-year process in which care has become increasingly important in the Regional Gender Agenda. In the region, the current sexual division of labor, based on the reproduction of gender stereotypes, negatively affects the lives of women and girls. Time use measurements show that women spend nearly three times as much time on unpaid care and domestic work as men.
The issue of care is especially relevant in the cascading crisis scenario facing the region, which encompasses the economic, social and environmental, food, educational and care dimensions, and requires urgent responses from those who have decision-making power. It is time to adopt transformational changes as proposed by the care society.
A roadmap towards the care society
The Buenos Aires Commitment is the roadmap to promote comprehensive care policies and systems, decent employment and the full and equal participation of women in leadership positions and in strategic sectors of the economy. For this reason, it is also a starting point to move towards a fair social organization of care within the framework of a new style of development “that promotes gender equality in the economic, social and environmental dimensions”. It is, in turn, a proposal to increase the participation of women in the labor force, strengthen their autonomy and move towards the care society.
Within the framework of the 64th Board of Directorsthe government representatives welcomed the Declaration of the ministers and high authorities of the national mechanisms for the advancement of women in Latin America. They asked the Government of Argentina, in its capacity as Vice President of the Commission on the Legal and Social Condition of Women on behalf of the Group of Latin American and Caribbean States, to present this Declaration at the 67th session of the Commission (CSW67).
The Declaration also addresses another of the contents of the Buenos Aires Commitment: the urgency of taking measures to reduce the digital gender gap. These measures refer both to the use, appropriation and development of technologies by women, as well as to promoting the participation of women in careers related to science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Precisely, “Innovation and technological change, and education in the digital age to achieve gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls” is the priority theme of CSW67. The Buenos Aires Commitment is key to progress in this direction.