An internal study prepared by the elderly care start-up, Aiudo, warns that up to 34% of domestic workers in Spain work without being registered with social security. The aforementioned report also reveals that 53% have worked in an irregular situation on some occasion, confirming the strong presence of the underground economy and the lack of regulation in the sector.
From this x-ray of the sector, it was also extracted that 46% of domestic workers charged a lower price per hour than the one established (7.43 €) due to a misinterpretation of Royal Decree 1620/2011 which saved them € 6.91 per hour (7% less than expected).
It should be remembered that many caregivers lost their jobs during the pandemic, so “more than 30% of domestic workers who work without being registered with Social Security could increase throughout 2021. This means that some 180,000 people still do not have a contract, ”admits Aiudo CEO Daniel Ibiza.
In this sense, d’Aiudo recognize that they promote the indefinite contract for domestic workers throughout Spain. Since its incorporation in 2016, they have never worked with independent caregivers and work proactively with families to raise awareness and recommend CDI, to the point that 88% of the contracts they manage are of this type.
From the National Association of Employment Agencies -ANAC- they coincide with the figures in this report and point to one of their own from two years ago. “Our 2019 study already told us that one in three caregivers worked without registering with social security. A figure that has continued to increase since then, ”said Yojana Pavn, president of ANAC. Among the reasons, besides the pandemic, he points to the increases in the SMI which have created a “domino effect”. “Raising the SMI and not offering help to families has led many to have to reduce the working hours of domestic workers or terminate the contract, which leads to an increase in the underground economy,” says Pavn.
A situation that is in line with the last two Government decisions related to this case, such as the sanctions that the Ministry of Labor will impose – between 6,250 euros and 190,000 euros – for families who pay in B or do not pay the Interprofessional Minimum Salary – SMI-, as well as the decision of the Ministry of Health not to vaccinate caregivers of dependent persons without a contract.
Domestic workers are not self-employed
Aiudo offers both assistants hired by the company for the home help service for dependent people, as well as domestic workers through the management of all work procedures for families and employees. However, Ibiza adds that “we cannot force families to enter into an indefinite contract”. Faced with this situation, he ensures that what they have always done is “inform and raise awareness”, which means that 88% of contracts managed from the employment agency are for an indefinite period.
“The permanent contract generates more stability in the caregivers of the elderly, offers them greater security, which helps them to be more engaged and to be able to focus on caring for the elderly.
D’Aiudo, they point out that home workers are not autonomous, so they cannot be compared to runners since they have a contract. “While the employment agencies oversee the jobs we manage, we ensure that domestic workers have all of their rights such as: vacation, severance pay, notice, sick leave, pay, breaks, overtime pay. All this security is not ensured by the platforms that collaborate with freelancers, ”they explain.
They also ensure that, although many entities have openly expressed the disappearance of the figure of the domestic worker, “they must understand that there are also elderly people who are not dependent. And for family care and to fight against loneliness, the regulated figure for this is the domestic worker ”.
Finally, he acknowledged that there was still a lot of work to be done and expressed that I was helping to continue to play an active role in achieving a more just environment for the care of the elderly and that the government accede to the Convention. International 189 of the ILO, which would equalize the rights of domestic workers with the general system.