With its new project, the EFFE Lab, EFFE aims to provide an overview of personal and household services (PHS) in the 27 Member States of the European Union. Based on an interactive map, this evolving tool offers both a national and comparative approach leading to detailed country files.
It responds to the lack of reliable statistics on the sector, both at European and international levels due to the often-informal nature of the relationship between PHS workers and their employers.
Competitive and equal:
Competitive and unequal:
Non competitive and equal :
Institution and home:
According to the EU definition, Personal and Household Services (PHS) refer to the work carried out by an individual for any household, including support of the household outside of the premises of the household, taking care of household members or performing tasks that other households are usually able to do themselves, excluding services that can only be performed by specifically qualified care or indirect care professionals.
PHS encompass direct and indirect care activities carried out by a worker, who is subject to remuneration, irrespective of the nature of the legal relationship with the household.
Direct care are activities that include personal assistance services, mainly for people with a certain level of “dependence”: elderly, disabled or invalid people but also children under 3 years of age. They allow individuals to remain in their own households for an extended period of time. Nursing or medical acts are excluded from these activities as they require specialised qualifications. Direct care activities include:
In practice, person-centred direct care activities are complemented by object-centred indirect care activities, which are essential for the well-being of individuals at home. They cover many aspects of everyday life such as:
Within the personal and household services sector, the direct household employment model between a household or an individual and an employee, at home, is characterized by a bilateral contractual employment relationship between two private individuals, without intermediary, and not responding to any profit or merchant purpose. In this sector, activities revolve around, within the home, between a household that feels the need to outsource the response to a need by employing a home-based employee, with the skills to satisfy this need. Based on trust and cooperation between employers and workers, this model aims to guarantee decent social rights to all employees at home.
This employment model is fully in line with the freedom of choice advocated by the European Strategy regarding care receivers since it allows households to choose their employee who meets their need for care at home.
Within the personal and household services, the intermediated model corresponds to a triangular work relationship, in which the worker is employed by an organisation. Whether private or public, the latter sells or provides services performed by a worker, who is employed by the organisation.
Self-employed individuals and auto-entrepreneurship are included in this intermediated model since the employment relationship is framed by a sales contract. In this situation, the work relationship is bilateral and not triangular. In opposition to the direct employment model, employees often have a unique employer.
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