The emerging live-in care market in the UK and migrant workers’ wellbeing: The complex interplay of Brexit and the COVID-19 pandemic

We virtually welcomed Sustainable Care team member Professor Shereen Hussein from the Department of Health Services Research and Policy, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine to the University of Sheffield.

Date: Monday 24 May 2021

Time: 12.30-2.00pm BST

Venue: Online

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About the seminar

Live-in care is a rapidly expanding home care model in England despite being uncharacteristic to the UK welfare regime. This form of care is predominantly provided by migrants who might be particularly attracted to work as live-in carers due to accommodation availability. It is usually organised through different formal and informal mechanisms and, in many situations, remains as private/domestic arrangements facilitated by introductory agencies.

Brexit and new immigration points-based systems introduced in January 2021 have direct implications on the supply of migrant workers, particularly from within the EU. Furthermore, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the care market dynamics, with some reporting shifting in preferences for the place of care diverging away from care homes.

This paper explores the implications of new complex care and immigration policy and practice landscape on the supply and experience of migrant live-in care workers. Based on research undertaken as part of the Sustainable Care programme, I draw on findings from policy and literature reviews review, interviews with 15 migrant live-in care workers in England to explore the distinct characteristics of live-in care as an emerging form of care.

I situate the discussion within a wellbeing framework that encompasses both workers and care recipients. I will then reflect on the potential impact of Brexit and COVID-19 on live-in care as a new emerging market. The discussion will use data collected from two Delphi surveys with key policy and practice stakeholders in the UK.

About the speaker

Shereen Hussein is a Professor of Health and Social Care Policy at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Shereen is an established multi-disciplinary Professor with extensive social care and health research experience working primarily with policymakers in the UK and internationally. Her background is in medical demography, statistics and computer science.

Shereen is a Co-Director of PRUComm, focusing on health and social care systems and commissioning. Shereen has advised the UK government and parliamentary committees on adult social care issues, particularly the workforce, including wages and immigration policies. Internationally, she has acted as a senior expert for the UN-ESCWA, UN; WHO; the World Bank and UNICEF, on LTC delivery and planning, elder abuse and ageing/dementia policies.

Shereen is a visiting Professor at the University of Kent, King’s College London and the University of Southern Queensland. She has recently established a unique GCRF-funded research network specific to policy and practice development for healthy ageing in the Middle East and North Africa (