Are More Au Pairs Taking Much Needed Nanny Jobs?
Since the au pair program was created to alleviate a shortage of eligible workers in the United States, is the au pair program necessary today given the condition of the economy?
Last week we asked if the demand and pay for nannies is declining as the Bureau of Labor Statistics confirms. Then, we asked, with the unemployment rate for 16-to 24-age group the highest since World War II are younger, cheaper nannies taking all the nanny jobs?
Today we ask, given the condition of the economy is the au pair program in America necessary? Are au pairs taking jobs about from American nannies?
In the United States the au pair program is designed to provide a broad range of families with affordable employees and to alleviate a shortage of eligible workers. The au pair program is a government cultural exchange program allowing 18- year old to 26-year old to foreigners to provide childcare in exchange for a small salary and room and board.
The rules of the program are provided by the State Department on their web site. Some of the regulations include that au pairs are limited to 45-hour work, in return for wages and an educational stipend, and they can stay with a family for no more than two-years.
The minimum salary of $195.75 is negotiable with minimum wages in NY and CA. Au pairs are to provide childcare only, no housework is negotiable. Au pairs are provided one and 1/2 days off weekly, no more than 10-hours per day, one full weekend off per month, two-weeks paid vacation, a private bedroom, and all meals provided.
Is the au pair program necessary today given the condition of the economy?
Does the au pair program provide unfair competition for nannies?