What Implications for the ‘European Social Model’?
Edited by Marie-Ange Moreau
Chapter 7: Carers, Gender and Employment Discrimination: What Does EU Law Offer Europe’s Carers?
Lisa Waddington INTRODUCTION1 Caring is a gendered activity. Women are far more likely than men to be engaged in providing care within the home, and to provide care for longer periods of time. Recipients of care will frequently be children, but also older people and people with disabilities. In the case of the latter group, it may be more appropriate to speak of providing personal assistance rather than care; however, in this article the generic term ‘care’ will be used to refer to the unpaid support provided within the home. In spite of the commitments which caring tasks involve, many female (and male) carers are economically active and engaged in paid employment. In many cases, as a result of the commitment to caring in terms of time or energy, this employment is part-time or home-based. Such (atypical) work is naturally recognised as economic activity, and therefore falls within the scope of EU employment legislation. As a consequence, all individuals who combine caring tasks with paid employment, be it typical or atypical employment, are entitled to benefit from the full range of rights which are conferred by EU law, including the right not to be discriminated against The author is very grateful to the Academy of European Law, the European University Institute and Prof. Marie-Ange Moreau for organising the Conference: ‘Before and After the Economic Crisis: What Implications for the “European Social Model”?’ in honour of Brian Bercusson and Yota Kravaritou, and to the participants at the conference for their...
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