The au pair controversy continues.....from a personal perspective, I know how expensive it can be to hire a fully qualified nanny/childminder. The au pair arrangement works really well for many of my friends and colleagues, who use it correctly. Unfortunately (as with zero-hours contracts in my view), there are a few who misuse the system, thereby creating negative press for those who don't. In this case, the WRC determined that an au pair should be treated as an employee, thereby entitling her to the full protection of employment law in Ireland. Apparently there are 40 more cases coming down the lines.
A Spanish child minder who won a landmark case against an Irish host family to be treated as an employee has said she hopes au pairs will "no longer be exploited as cheap labour". The woman, who wishes to remain anonymous, took a case to the Workplace Relations Commission on a number of employment grounds. Ruling in her favour, the WRC found the family breached several employment laws, including that she was not paid the minimum wage.