Occupational safety and health Authorities begin to monitor the use of foreign babysitters and cleaners in households to prevent exploitation

Supervision ensures that employers comply with Finnish labor legislation. Surveillance will start in southern Finland.

8.6. 14:36

Southern Finland the regional government agency (avi) will begin monitoring this year households that use foreign workers as cleaners or babysitters, for example. Supervision checks that employers comply with Finnish labor legislation. Domestic work has been covered by labor legislation since 2016.

This is the first time that the authority has taken the initiative to monitor the use of foreign labor for domestic work. The aim is to combat labor exploitation.

“We have been aware for a long time that this is a risk industry for work-related exploitation. However, supervision has been challenging in part because our resources have been rather small, ”the labor inspector Nina Mäki Avista from Southern Finland says.

Resource scarcity relief has now been obtained. Under the supervision of the foreign workforce, new inspectors, who are currently being trained, will start this year.

According to Mäki, domestic work is an industry for which there are hardly any requests for external supervision to the authority.

“However, the phenomenon of work-based exploitation has become more and more of a wallpaper. We have now woken up to this at the latest, ”he says.

In the industry, the risk may include the employee’s dependence on his or her employer. For example, a residence permit may be limited to the work of a domestic worker and a cleaner in the service of a private employer. Foreigners working in the field also often lack social networks in Finland.

Occupational safety and health authority conducts inspections of households at this stage in southern Finland. Ideas for extending controls to other parts of Finland are pending, but there are no official plans yet.

“According to our information, most foreign labor has been hired in Southern Finland. For example, so-called cleaning rings are especially there. That is why surveillance also starts in southern Finland, ”Mäki explains.

For monitoring purposes, employees are asked to provide information on working conditions and employment conditions. They can also contact the authority via an anonymous telephone service.

According to Mäki, domestic work is most typically done by Filipinos in Finland. There are also a lot of Russians and Ukrainians in the industry.

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