The Care Economy in Indonesia

To advance women’s right to decent work including in Indonesia, there is an urgent need to focus on the structural barriers already faced by women in all facets of their life, which place them at a greater risk of further exclusion and poverty.

(c) ILO/F. Latief
The care economy is growing as the demand for childcare and care for the elderly is increasing in all regions. It will thus create a great number of jobs in the coming years. However, care work across the world remains characterised by a void of benefits and protections, low wages or non-compensation, and exposure to physical, mental and, in some cases, sexual harm. It is clear that new solutions to care are needed on two fronts: in regards to the nature and provision of care policies and services, and the terms and conditions of care work.

The ILO report Care at Work: Investing in Care Leave Policies and Care Services for a More Gender-Equal World of Work (ILO, 2022) provides a global overview of national laws and practices regarding care policies, namely maternity protection, paternity, parental and other care-related leave policies, as well as childcare and long-term care services. The report presents findings from an ILO legal survey of 185 countries, and reviews progress made around the world over the past decade while assessing the persisting and significant legal gaps that translate into a lack of protection and support for millions of workers with family responsibilities across the world.


The ILO will support constituents in Indonesia to enhance their capacities on the following priority areas:
  1. Development of knowledge and tools to advocate for and promote conducive and sustainable ecosystems of care that work for all, with attention to measuring and valuing paid and unpaid care work while promoting a fairer distribution of unpaid care work between women and men and the family unit and the state through adequate, inclusive care leave policies and services, including workers in the informal economy;
  2. Promotion of women’s economic empowerment through access to decent work with equal pay for work of equal value with attention to promoting gender-responsive job-rich recovery strategies and  ILO Convention Nos. 183 and 156, including through social dialogue; and
  3. Prevention and elimination of violence and harassment in the world of work through the promotion, ratification and implementation of ILO Convention No. 190 and Recommendation No. 206.

Expected project outcomes

  • National institutions have knowledge and tools to reduce and redistribute women’s unpaid care work
  • ILO Constituents have knowledge and tools to better negotiate for women’s access to a more equal and safe world of work
  • National Institutions gain capacities to formulate and implement gender responsive employment policies

Expected project outputs

  • A new knowledge on usage of care policies and services, equal pay, violence, and harassment in the world of work developed;
  • Tools and packages of care policies, services and skills developed for women in-low skilled jobs, in the informal economy, conflict prone and degraded environment setting;
  • Intervention models to prevent and address violence and harassment, including in the informal economy, in SMEs and in training providers developed;
  • Capacity of constituents to implement inclusive, job-rich, gender responsive employment policies, including macroeconomic, sectoral, active labour market and skills policies, built and awareness raising delivered;
  • Reformed of discriminatory laws for women promoted;
  • Men’s and community engagement towards fostering a culture of equality between women and men promoted; and
  • Bipartite and tripartite social dialogue on issues relating to women economic empowerment strengthened.

Project partners

  • Ministry of Women Empowerment and Child Protection
  • Ministry of Manpower
  • Indonesia Employers' Association (Apindo)
  • Trade unions 
  • NGO/CSO working on Women Movement and Care Economy Issues