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Lockdown: women do more housework, men have more free time

Credit: Freepik

The lockdown because of the new coronavirus (Covid-19) has only reinforced the inequalities between men and women in Belgium, according to a survey conducted by the Free University of Brussels (VUB).

Women spend half an hour more of their time on housework per day than men, and that men have an hour of free time per day more than women, researcher Theun Pieter van Tienoven told Het Nieuwsblad.

The VUB’s TOR research group launched a survey (www.dagelijksleven.eu) in which it wanted to observe how the coronavirus health crisis, and subsequent lockdown, is affecting daily life. The first results of the study show that confinement is more stressful for women than for men.

On average, both men and women have an extra hour of free time per day, 6 hours instead of 5 hours, and are one hour less on the road. However, on average, men have one more hour of free time per day than women. Women are spending an average of half an hour more per day on housework and childcare.

“Initial results show that for the time being, time-related stress is not as high as expected,” said Van Tienoven. “We are less pressed for time than we were before the coronavirus crisis. But it is still stressful to manage work, education for your children, housework and leisure in one place,” he added.

“Although the daily distribution of time differs little between women and men, at first glance, it seems that it is mainly women who try to manage both the professional and private spheres at home,” Van Tienoven added.

The Brussels Times