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Unpaid Care Work Among Utah Women. Utah Women Stats Research Snapshot (No. 9)
  • Susan R. Madsen, Utah Valley University
  • Robbyn T. Scribner, Utah Valley University
Unpaid work, including childcare, eldercare, housework, and other tasks, is vitally important to the creation of strong families, communities, and nations; in fact, such domestic work has been called “the work that makes all other work possible.” According to the McKinsey Global Institute, the monetary value of women’s unpaid work is estimated to be $10 trillion each year, and women worldwide spend a significantly larger portion of their time than men performing this critical work. This happens for many reasons, including personal values and choices, cultural and social norms, unconscious biases, and specific economic and employment considerations. The global average for a women’s daily unpaid work is 4 hours and 47 minutes vs. 1 hour and 30 minutes for men. The gap between men’s and women’s unpaid work is largest in many developing nations, yet it remains significant in the United States, and the gap in Utah is higher than the national average. Researchers and thought leaders worldwide are urging individuals and societies to recognize that unpaid work is indeed work and to value it accordingly; additionally, many assert that this important work must be distributed more equally between men and women in order for families and communities to thrive. 
This research snapshot focuses on three areas: 
1) An overview of unpaid care work and its division between women and men both globally and locally;
2) An analysis of some of the factors leading to high rates of unpaid work among Utah women as well as the resulting implications; and 
3) A discussion of possible ways to redistribute some unpaid work and therefore ensure Utah women can also attend to other vital areas of their lives.
Publication Date
June 5, 2017
Citation Information
Madsen, S. R., & Scribner, R. (2017, June 5). Unpaid care work among Utah women. Utah Women Stats Research Snapshot (No. 9). Office of the Utah Women & Leadership Project. Retrieved from