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ILO launches Global Care Policy Portal and Care Policy Investment Simulator

ILO hopes these new tools will encourage the investment needed to support the two billion people still without adequate maternity and paternity support, parental leave and childcare services.

News | 07 March 2023

GENEVA (ILO News) – Two new online tools that aim to help encourage progress towards the goals of adequate maternity protection, paternity and parental leave, and quality childcare and long-term care services have been launched by the International Labour Organization (ILO).

The ILO Global Care Policy Portal, is a knowledge hub on legal and statistical indicators on national care leave policies and services, created to advance the ILO’s transformative agenda for gender equality and non-discrimination.  

It allows users to analyse and compare country-level care leave policies and services for more than 180 countries. The Portal contains information on eleven topics including: maternity, paternity and parental leave, health protection for pregnant and nursing women, breastfeeding at work, childcare and long-term care services. It uses international labour standards – the Maternity Protection Convention, 2000 (No. 183), the Workers with Family Responsibilities Convention, 1981 (No. 156) and their accompanying Recommendations Nos. 165 and 191 – as benchmarks.

To help calculate the investment requirements, employment benefits and impact on gender equality of different care policies, the ILO has also developed the Care Policy Investment Simulator.

The Simulator is the largest online care policy-modelling tool available. Containing data from more than 80 countries and built on more than 180 statistical indicators, the Simulator can help create tailor-made investment packages related to four care policies: childcare-related paid leave (maternity, paternity, and parental leave), breastfeeding breaks, early childhood care and education services, and long-term care services. The simulator then calculates the results automatically, allowing the user to better understand the investment requirements of the care policy package, the job generation impact, the reduction in gender employment and wage gaps and the return on investment.

Both the Global Care Policy Portal and the Investment Simulator are free to use, benchmarked to international labour standards, and built on decades of ILO and global policy research.

According to the ILO’s Care at work report, two billion potential parents still live in countries without adequate maternity protection, paternity and parental leave, and quality childcare services with decent care jobs. Closing these childcare policy gaps could create millions of jobs by 2035 and promote women’s employment and earnings.

Pregnant worker in a garment factory in the Philippines © E.Tuyay / ILO