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Is your husband or boyfriend doing enough chores? In Spain, there's an app for that

According to a recent study women in Spain spend more than twice as many hours as men doing household chores.
According to a recent study women in Spain spend more than twice as many hours as men doing household chores. Copyright Jason Briscoe/ Unsplash
Copyright Jason Briscoe/ Unsplash
By Laura Llach
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A recent report by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, says women in Spain spend more than twice as many hours as men doing household chores.

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Just two months ago, Claudia and Fernando moved to a small flat in the Spanish capital.

It was a big step for the 28-year-old couple.

But what had, at first, seemed idyllic, has now turned into constant bickering over who does what at home.

Fernando says he cooks more than Claudia and she says she has to constantly remind him to pick up his clothes and sweep the floor.

Now, Spain's Ministry of Equality, headed by Irene Montero, wants to lend a hand to couples who are struggling with the division of labour at home.

The plan, which is already underway, is to develop an application that will count the hours men and women living in the same household spend on housework.

"An app to track how much time we spend doing chores?" asks Claudia in disbelief.

"I’m not sure if it would work for us. We may have even more arguments when we see the difference in the average time each person is doing," she adds.

Women vs men at home?

"The app will be launched next September. It will be free and can be downloaded on all different platforms," the Ministry of Equality told Euronews.

"It aims to promote the joint responsibility of tasks at home by way of a time-use accounting system," the Ministry adds.

María Isabel and Manuel have been married for 26 years. The couple, originally from Barcelona, split their chores from day one.

"At home I saw my mother being a house slave and I didn't want that to happen to me," says María Isabel.

Manuel cooks, does the dishes and goes to the supermarket, while María Isabel does the laundry, irons and sorts clothes.

"We never argue about who does more or less at home. That's why I don't see how the app can be useful, we will take longer to log our tasks than to organise ourselves," she adds.

The aim of the app is to be “innovative” when it comes to time accounting, as explained this week by the Secretary of State for Equality and against Gender Violence, Ángela Rodríguez.

“It is not only about including the time spent cleaning the kitchen, which can only be 20 minutes, but also all the tasks done beforehand so that this can be accomplished, such as buying cleaning products or even planning the shopping list”, she said.

The Ministry of Equality points out that women are the ones who spend more hours at home.

"The app will have a feminist approach. It will bring to light many invisible tasks that cause mental load and ones that are not related to the physical house, such as planning meals or dealing with the emotional care of children," says the Ministry of Equality.

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According to a recent report by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), women in Spain spend more than twice as many hours as men (five versus two in the case of men).

"The application is designed for all types of families and also for people who share a flat or live with friends," says the Ministry.

"We want to sow a seed that will later help us develop public policies around a co-responsible state. The great pending debt of the Equality policies".

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