02.07.2014 | Eurodad

Taxing men and women

Why gender is crucial for a fair tax system

This paper from Eurodad member Christian Aid sets out why a strong gender analysis is necessary to the work of civil society organisations to promote fair and efficient tax systems at national level. The study brings together existing literature and empirical evidence to address how women and men are affected by tax in different ways and how tax policy can contribute to advance gender equality.

The paper aims at supporting tax justice advocates to carry out a gender analysis of their national tax systems and represents Christian Aid's first step to integrate a strong gender analysis into its tax justice work.

Christian Aid makes the following recommendations:

For civil society organisations working on tax justice:

  • Include gender analysis at all levels in research, policy formation and advocacy for tax justice.
  • Seek to work in alliance with women’s rights organisations, budget monitoring groups and others working to ensure a fair allocation of government’s resources, from raising to expenditure.
  • Advocate for gender dynamics around unpaid care to be considered in fiscal policy.

For governments:

  • Assess fiscal policy from a gender equality perspective.
  • Assess the gendered impact of indirect taxes, including considering whether incomes and quality of life can be better sustained by expenditure rather than exemptions.
  • Consider how fiscal policy affects gender dynamics around unpaid care from a gender equality perspective.

For revenue authorities in developing countries:

  • Set up systems to file taxpayers’ data disaggregated by sex and age.
  • Cooperate with unions and other organisations representing women working in the informal sector to improve tax collection, including simplification of taxes levied and fair assessment of capacity to pay.
  • Invest in capacity building and awareness raising for tax officials in gender issues and improve customer-service relationships.