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Stealing Candy from the Baby : A Look at the Third Wave of Feminism

By Gayle, B.

It is the argument of this paper that the Canadian government has not yet achieved its goals of women’s equality, elimination of child poverty and optimal national productivity due to an oversight in social policy that neglects the unpaid caregiving sector. The care of the sick, elderly, handicapped, dying and the young has been historically a female role and as women have moved into paid labor, this role has been devalued creating barriers both to those who try to juggle career and family and to those who for a time prioritize the caregiving side, with serious financial and social penalties. Arguments are noted from sociology, health, economics and feminist theory to support the claim that recognition of the care sector is a vital step to achieving equality and ‘best interests’ goals. The present justification for one-sided support of the care sector, focusing only on paid care is analyzed for its lapses in logic, its negatives stereotyping of the unpaid role and its motivations which may undermine the goals it seeks to achieve.


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