Health Issues among female migrant Domestic Workers

Kouta, Christiana ; Kaite, Charis P. (2012)

Book chapter

Female migrant domestic workers face discrimination in the health care system concerning their access to good quality health services, as well as in participation in policy and decision making (ILO, 2010; MIGS, 2008) In 2008, according to Flander (2011), 48% of immigrants coming to Europe were female. In Cyprus, Italy, Spain, France and Ireland female migrants reportedly outnumber males. In addition, data collected in 2005 from 25 EU Member States showed that the fourth and fifth largest occupational categories for females were those of domestic workers. In recent years there has been a large influx of Filipino, Sri Lankan and Vietnamese female migrant domestic workers to Cyprus (Flander, 2011; Eurostat, 2008). In Cyprus, from 2000 to 2010 there were 88,156 female immigrants; international migrants as a percentage of the population were 17.5%, and more than half of all migrants in 2010 were female, most of them being domestic workers (UN DESA, 2009). The aims of this chapter are to: a) review international literature on female domestic workers’ health, b) identify international strategies and policies in relation to this issue, c) describe the situation in Cyprus and other European countries and d) provide recommendations in order to reduce health inequalities affecting female migrant domestic workers.

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