Press Release March 1, 2006

UNITED NATIONS CHURCH, NEW YORK CITY -– Women from all over the world are meeting today at the United Nations Church in New York City to voice the need for recognition of the value of homemakers and at-home caregivers. Hosted by Caregiver Credit USA and la federation europeenne des femmes actives au foyer (FEFAF) of Europe, this event coincides with the annual meeting of the UN Commission on the Status of Women. It will also feature guest speakers from CURAM of Ireland.

“Linking women and men from around the world, this simple meeting defines a huge goal. It is about finally expanding traditional definitions of what ‘work’ is, of how an economy ticks, and of how societies can really value all roles their citizens play,” says Beverley Smith, long time lobbyist for the value of unpaid work.

“This movement is not religiously motivated and takes no political sides. It is simply about including what for too long has gone unnoticed, rounding out the full picture of work done in any nation. This is a group of ordinary men and women coming out of their homes and coming to New York City, mostly at their own expense and at personal sacrifice, all because they believe in something very strongly.”

In 1995 at Beijing, all UN member nations signed the Platform for Action to finally notice, tally and value unpaid labour, historically “women’s work.” However progress has been very slow, with most nations valuing it only dependent on paid labour. Maternity benefits are tied to paid work, and child subsidies based on paid work are steps along the way that have not yet valued caregiving itself, without conditions.

Many moms, dads, relatives and friends of those needing care are out to change that. They want this final hurdle removed so that all work is valued, paid and unpaid. They want the balance between career and family to be between two win-win options so women and men can make their commitments based on what they believe and needs they perceive, not only based on money.

For more information, please contact:

Beverley Smith

Diane Pagen

Aine Ui Ghiolooagain (CURAM vice president, Ireland)
+353 1 282 6460/ +353 46 943 0314

Please visit the following websites for additional information:

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