Domestic work, in Spain an app for equality in the family and to divide it equally –

Domestic work, in Spain an app for equality in the family and to divide it equally -


Making breakfast for the children, hanging out the laundry, washing the floors of the house. Nothing new: household chores are still a predominantly female prerogative, even in OECD countries, as demonstrated by one of the latest reports from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Every day (even in Italy) women dedicate 2 hours and 47 minutes more to household chores than men. Nor has the pandemic changed the asymmetry index calculated by Istat, which measures the part of the time women are entitled to for housework carried out by both partners: 62.6% for women between the ages of 25 and 44 years in couples where both partners work. But the percentage gets worse when you have young children. In Spain, however, women spend more than twice as many hours on these tasks as men (five and two hours respectively). A situation on which the Spanish equivalent of the Ministry of Equal Opportunities has decided to intervene. As? Working on an app that will measure the time each person in a household spends on household chores.

The presentation at Cedaw in Geneva

The application has not yet been developed, we are still in the phase dedicated to the tender to identify the company that will take care of the project. But according to Ángela Rodríguez Martínez, the 33-year-old feminist and openly bisexual, member of Podemos and since October 2021 Secretary of State for Equality, the app could be ready by the end of the summer. Speaking at the Committee for the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), in Geneva, Rodríguez explained that this idea is part of the “co-responsibility plan”, one of the projects of the Spanish government approved in 2021 to ensure that equality between gender also extends to the assistance area. The Plan is now endowed with around 200 million euros and relies on the Spanish Autonomous Communities. The goal is to build an integral system, as is happening in Argentina, which promotes co-responsibility between men and women, the state and the world of work.

How the app will work

To get an idea of ​​what the app could be like (which will be completely free, designed for mobile phones and available for download on various platforms), a suggestion comes directly from the secretary of state, who compared the application to the one used during trips to share expenses: different users in a common group note when each one spends, for example, on petrol or food and, at the end of the trip, the app does the accounting and indicates how much each owes to the others.

Spanish feminist politics

In order for the app’s goal to be concretely achieved, Rodríguez explained that it will be important to pay attention to the sometimes invisible aspects of running a house that still take time. The secretary of state gave the example of cleaning the kitchen: “which can take 20 minutes”, but first someone had to first make sure that “there was detergent for washing and that a shopping list had been planned”. The announcement made before the UN commission (22 women and one man) is part of the periodic meeting which, since 1983, Spain has held to submit its feminist policies to the examination of the United Nations Committee. In 2015, CEDAW had criticized Spain precisely for the backward steps in terms of equality. Now, Rodríguez believes that the government has “done its homework”.


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