Norway Center Party Will Ban Au pair Program

According to Dagsavisen’s report, Arnstad hopes more parties will support the proposal to ban au pairs in Norway. 

– If families in Norway want a maid, then they should be honest about it and pay the price. Au pair program has evolved into a system where one obtains cheap labor to Norway, and then I think it should be abolished, says Marit Arnstad, parliamentary leader in the Center Party.

She notes that trade unions are critical of the scheme and believes they can get support for the proposal from other parties. 

There are around 3,000 au pairs in Norway, and according to NRK around 80 percent of them are young, poor girls from the Philippines.

In 2013 the coalition government introduced a quarantine scheme for host families abusing the au pair scheme, precisely to prevent exploition of cheap labor. So far, five families, a total of ten people have been subjected to quarantine. At the same time a helpline for au pairs was created for au pairs.

Arnstad admits that these measures have not worked as intended so far.

About Au pair Scheme

The purpose of the scheme is cultural, and residence permit is granted for a maximum of two years. The au pair, who is between 18 and 30, should be able to increase their language skills and knowledge of Norwegian society to contribute with light housework and / or childcare with a host family.

The host family must have good knowledge of Norwegian society and speak Norwegian to the au pair. If a person in the host family is from the same country of origin as the au pair, you can normally not be a host family. 

The working hours must normally not exceed five hours a day, and the maximum number of working hours per week is 30. Au pairs cannot work more than 30 hours. 

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