Foreign caretaker helping our parents and leaving their own life behind
The German society is changing. Fewer babies are born, mobility is rising with each generation, parents and their children often live far away from each other and for the older generation life has become
increasingly longer. Estimates speak of about 100.000 to 150.000 caretakers from the east currently working in private houses in Germany. This market segmentoften moves between the legal and the illegal. The costs for a German company providing 24 / 7 care at home can easily exceed 10.000 Euro per Month.
For a woman that comes from eastern Europe and lives with the elder people in one flat, the cost is often not higher than 2000 Euro a month, depending on her language skills and whether she is works officially or black. It is cheaper for the old peoples’ families to use this market and leave their relatives at home than to send them to a nursing home. But for the caretakers this means that at this price and with their long working days they are earning just about 2.5 Euro per hour. For the German state the costs would also be exploding if all those estimated 150.000 people in need of care and currently living with an east European caretaker were to moved into a nursing home, so this ‘grey market’ is tolerated. This is because the benefits from the state’s long-term care insurance are much higher for one person in a nursing home then if he or she is still living at home.