Publications Largest-ever survey finds low pay makes Europe’s domestic and home care sector “unsustainable”


Press releases
Largest-ever survey finds low pay makes Europe’s domestic and home care sector “unsustainable”

The largest-ever survey in Europe on Personal & Household Services (PHS) has uncovered alarming trends. With over 6,500 participants from 26 countries, the findings paint a stark picture of a sector in crisis. Over half of surveyed workers express doubts about their ability to continue until retirement, with almost 60% contemplating leaving their roles within the next three years, predominantly due to insufficient pay.

This revelation is particularly troubling given Europe’s aging population, where the proportion of those over 65 is set to increase substantially by 2050. The pressing need for quality care is undeniable, yet the sector grapples with labor shortages and high turnover rates.

The survey underscores the urgent need for strengthened social dialogue and collective bargaining at the European level. Improved working conditions and fair compensation are not only essential for the well-being of workers but also for ensuring quality care and domestic services for society as a whole.

Furthermore, the survey highlights the pivotal role of users-employers within the PHS sectors. Their input emphasizes the importance of representation and collective agreements in establishing minimum standards and fostering a supportive environment for both workers and employers.

In light of these findings, stakeholders across the board, including trade unions, employers’ organizations, and policymakers, must come together to address the systemic issues plaguing the sector. From enhancing public recognition and investment to implementing measures for better work-life balance and combating undeclared work, concerted efforts are needed to build a sustainable future for Europe’s domestic and home care sector.

Click here to download the full 2024 PHS Employment Monitor report.

Latest publications
EFFE 2024 European Electoral Manifesto

A social Europe that works for every home