"Au pairs in Iceland sent out to work"

In relation to news from Norway regarding a potential ban on hiring au-pairs due to abuse, the Icelandic National Broadcaster (RÚV) interviewed Margrét Steinarsdóttir, the Director of the Icelandic Human Rights Centre, regarding to the situation of au-pairs in Iceland.

The following is from the English mbl.is site:

Foreign au pairs in Iceland are often made to do all sorts of other jobs for their host families, according to Mar­grét Stein­ars­dótt­ir, Director of the Icelandic Human Rights Centre.

“Au pairs do not have a work permit and may not work,” explains Stein­ars­dótt­ir to Icelandic national broadcaster RÚV on their Spegillinn radio programme. “The host families then take the wages the au pairs have earned.”

“I have seen several cases of young people coming to Iceland as au pairs, then being put to work in construction, cleaning, delivering papers, all sorts,” Stein­ars­dótt­ir says.

According to police, the usual signs of trafficking are not present when it comes to the arrival of au pairs into the country, and any abuse only comes to light later.

The original RÚV news item (in Icelandic) in available here.

Icelandic Human Rights Centre

Túngata 14 | 101 Reykjavík | Sími 552 2720 | info[at]humanrights.is

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