International Migration Papers No. 96

The gender dimension of domestic work in Western Europe

In Western Europe, as in many other parts of the world, domestic work has the charasteristic of attracting a large and increasing number of female migrants. In this report, Ms Maria Gallotti examines the current situation of domestic workers in Western Europe, focusing in particular on women migrant workers, and recognizing them as belonging to one of the largest female dominated occupations and one of the least protected groups of workers under international and national labour legislation. The report has the purpose of demystifying clichés and identifying existing regulations, rules and practices governing the subject in selected countries of the region as well as possible strategies various actors can adopt to facilitate their successful integration into European labour markets. The report states that their situation, as well as the legislation covering them is rapidly evolving to better respond to the existing increasing demand.