Do taxes influence inequality between women and men?

Analysis of tax codes in Guatemala, Honduras and the Dominican Republic with a gender lens to shape tax policy to limit inequality between women and men

From the perspective of feminist economics, fiscal policies – like any other type of policy – affect the lives of women and men differently, given that they are designed and implemented in contexts that are still heavily shaped by gender stereotypes. These stereotypes are preconceived ideas on the roles of men (as providers of household income) and women (as caretakers of the household and its members) in society. This is what is formally known as 'the sexual division of labour'.

Against the backdrop of a lack of analysis of tax systems from the perspective of gender, this report is a limited, but relevant, contribution covering two Central American countries (Guatemala and Honduras), as well as the Dominican Republic. The report seeks to demonstrate the gendered implications of how tax systems are designed, focusing on identifying aspects of taxation that can damage women's economic autonomy. It also offers recommendations for transforming tax policy as an instrument to help combat some of the inequalities affecting women.