Throughout the world, caring for the young, the elderly, and the sick has traditionally been women's work, a reality resulting from assumptions made about the roles and responsibilities of women and girls. This gendered division of labour is amplified in the context of HIV and AIDS. In Africa alone, women account for two-thirds of all caregivers for people living with HIV (Secretary-General's Task Force, 2004). This issues paper looks at the implications of HIV and AIDS on women's unpaid labour burden and is followed by an article by Rania Antonopoulos and Taun Toay entitled "From unpaid to paid care work: the macroeconomic implications of HIV and AIDS on women's time tax-burdens".
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