TIME’S UP Launches ‘Care Economy Business Council’ to Reimagine Nation’s Caregiving Infrastructure
Hundreds of Companies – including Care.com, Levi Strauss & Co., JPMorgan Chase, Spotify, Pixar, Verizon, and More – Commit to Model and Advance Best Practices and Policies Around Caregiving, and to Change Workplace Cultural Norms
Washington, D.C. – Today, TIME’S UP launched the Care Economy Business Council, a coalition of nearly 200 businesses across industries with a simple mission: reimagine our nation’s caregiving infrastructure so we can get people back to work and build a stronger, more resilient economy for all of us.
“We are at a pivotal moment in the fight for safe, fair, and equitable workplaces,” said Tina Tchen, president and CEO of TIME’S UP. “Business leaders recognize that caregiving can no longer be a personal responsibility for workers to solve on their own. We need to invest in our caregiving infrastructure just as much as we invest in traditional infrastructure like roads and bridges. And employers must play a critical role in this effort.”
The coalition – which includes Fortune 500 companies, small businesses, investors, and entrepreneurs – is committed to looking inward to improve workplace practices and cultural norms to better support workers who are caregivers, while using their collective voice to build support for robust investments in the care economy.
“Care is a societal issue requiring a societal solution,” said Care.com CEO Tim Allen. “We have the opportunity not only to rebuild our nation’s care infrastructure but to reimagine what that looks like. Monolithic solutions built for a 9-5 era must be replaced with flexible care options accessible to all regardless of where, when or how a family lives and works. More than $11 trillion dollars of unpaid care work is done annually, primarily by women and women of color, and the lack of care solutions is driving them from the workforce. To stem that tide and fuel female workforce participation, the government and business communities must work together to drive the change we need.”
Caregivers make up the backbone of our economy, yet our workplaces are not built to support that: one third of all U.S. employees have left a job during their career in order to manage an unmet caregiving responsibility and nearly 50% of companies reported lack of child care as an impediment to hiring or calling back workers during the pandemic.
Closed schools and shuttered child care facilities have forced hundreds of thousands of women to drop out of the workforce. The impact is staggering: In less than one year, women have lost more than three decades of progress in labor force participation and more than two decades in pay equity.
“TIME’S UP is absolutely spot on in their assessment that there’s a caregiving burden on women – and especially on women of color – in America,” said Soul Popped Gourmet Popcorn, Inc. Founder De J. Lozada. “It’s real and beyond time for it to be exposed and lifted. As a small business owner and caregiver, the important work TIME’S UP is leading will hopefully create the space for everyone to feel empowered to help shoulder the responsibility of care for our loved ones and for those needing care in a professional setting.”
The caregiving crisis has clear ramifications for the business community: When employees don’t get the support they need for their caregiving responsibilities, employers pay the hidden costs – including turnover, rehiring, and absenteeism. And these costs have economic ramifications across our economy.
“The last year has proven what we have always known: our employees thrive when they are given the support they need to do their jobs well,” said Brian Lamb, Global Head of Diversity and Inclusion at JPMorgan Chase. “Caregivers are a perfect example—they face a crisis that has been brewing for decades, particularly among working women who cannot fully achieve workplace equity without a major shift in how businesses support them. At JPMorgan Chase we’re proud to join the Care Economy Business Council to share our own innovative approaches and advocate for long-term solutions to this issue.”
The benefits of caregiving and paid leave policies far outweigh the costs: workers are more motivated, more productive, and have higher morale. According to a recent TIME’S UP report, a $77.5 billion annual investment over 10 years would translate to 22.5 million new jobs and $220 billion in new economic activity.
“Data has shown that when women work, economies flourish. Sadly, we saw millions of women downshift their careers during the pandemic as daycares and schools were closed or disrupted. This further highlighted a critical imperative that we must solve by creating equitable access to caregiver infrastructure and support,” said Christy Pambianchi, Chief Human Resource Officer, Verizon. “We can’t pursue real, lasting gender equality if we ask women to choose between having a career or caring for realities at home. Together, we can build a brighter future with a caregiver framework that works for all and allows women to reach their full potential, personally and professionally. Because when women rise, so does the world.”
Beyond their own companies, coalition members are committed to working with advocacy partners to push for key public policy interventions. The Council seeks government action to ensure that:
- All workers have access to a baseline of federally-funded family and medical leave as well as safe, quality, affordable child care and elder care; and that,
- The caregiving profession is elevated to ensure dignified work and living wages.
For more information or to join the Council, visit our website or text TIMETOCARE to 306-44.
TIME’S UP Foundation
The TIME’S UP™ Foundation insists upon safe, fair, and dignified work for all by changing culture, companies, and laws. We enable more people to seek justice through the TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund™. We pioneer innovative research driving toward solutions to address systemic inequality and injustice in the workplace through the TIME’S UP Impact Lab. And we reshape key industries from within so they serve as a model for all industries. The TIME’S UP Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.
TIME’S UP™ Now
TIME’S UP™ Now is the nonpartisan and not-for-profit advocacy arm of TIME’S UP. We advocate for safe, fair, and dignified work for all in the public and private sectors, calling for an end to harassment and other related forms of discrimination on the job. And we fight to rebuild the systems that have taken away women’s power for far too long. TIME’S UP Now is a 501(c)(4) social welfare organization.
Care Economy Business Council
The Care Economy Business Council is an initiative of TIME’S UP through TIME’S UP Now, an independent, nonpartisan, and not-for-profit 501(c)(4)charitable organization and TIME’S UP Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. TIME’S UP and the TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund (a separate entity housed at the National Women’s Law Center) reserve the right to comment or otherwise take a position on any company, institution, or individual, regardless of their participation in the Care Economy Business Council. TIME’S UP applauds its Care Economy Business Council members; however, membership does not imply, symbolize, or ascribe TIME’S UP’s approval of any policies or actions.