Time to care: unpaid and underpaid care work and the global inequality crisis

Weather Working poor Labour market

The extreme gap between rich and poor is undermining the fight against poverty, damaging economies around the globe and fuelling public anger and unrest, especially as climate related disasters become more commonplace. This research demonstrates the extent of the gap between rich and poor:

Key findings

  1. In 2019, the world’s billionaires, only 2,153 people, have more wealth than 4.6 billion people.
  2. The 22 richest men have more wealth than all the women in Africa.
  3. The world’s richest 1% have more than twice as much wealth as 6.9 billion people.
  4. If you saved $10,000 a day since the building of the pyramids in Egypt you would have one-fifth the average fortune of the 5 richest billionaires.
  5. If everyone were to sit on their wealth piled up in $100 bills, most of humanity would be sitting on the floor. A middle-class person in a rich country would be sitting at the height of a chair. The world’s two richest men would be sitting in outer space.
  6. The monetary value of women’s unpaid care work globally for women aged 15 and over is at least $10.8 trillion annually – three times the size of the world’s tech industry.
  7. Taxing an additional 0.5% of the wealth of the richest 1% over the next 10 years is equal to investments needed to create 117 million jobs in education, health and elderly care and other sectors, and to close care deficits.


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