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This new report by Denis Bouget, Slavina Spasova and Bart Vanhercke (OSE) is concerned with some of the key questions that arise regarding (a) the work-life balance of working-age people – mainly women – who care for disabled and chronically ill dependent relatives, (b) reconciling work and care obligations and (c) maintaining the well-being of the carers and their families. The analysis focuses on carers of working age, whether or not they are actually working.

The report draws on the national contributions prepared by the 35 European Social Policy Network (ESPN) Country Teams. It demonstrates that the work-life balance of the carer – mostly a working age woman – is a problematic issue which is rarely recognised as such. In the majority of countries, LTC policies are geared to the dependent person and overlook the carer’s situation. Only a few countries – namely those with universal and comprehensive LTC systems – make the necessary arrangements to enable carers to remain in employment and preserve their work-life balance. Nevertheless, even in these favourable contexts, some recent policy reforms and political discourses accentuate deinstitutionalisation and the extension of community care without, however, promoting the development of public in-home services.

Please follow this link to access the study "Work-life balance measures for persons of working age with dependent relatives in Europe - A study of national policies", commissioned by the European Commission (DG EMPL). 

Please follow this link if you want to access the 35 country reports produced by the experts of the European Social Policy Network.