From Private Responsibility to Public Policy: Women and the Cost of Caregiving to Elderly Kin

  • Sheva Medjuck Mount Saint Vincent University
  • Mary O`Brien Mount Saint Vincent University
  • Carol Tozer Mount Saint Vincent University


The purpose of this article is to examine the relationship between women's caregiving to elderly kin and their paid employment, andthe unresponsiveness of policy to the costs incurred by women who provide this care. Care of elderly kin has replicated the ideological and material basis in which all women's work is rationalized. As such, there is a pressing need to address simultaneously the domestic division of labour, women's labour force participation, corporate responsibility, and public policy. However, as long as women continue to have the major responsibility for the care of elderly kin, there seems to be little impetus for radical rethinking of the issue of caregiving.
Original Research