A current small-scale research among 53 au pairs conducted by MRCI indicates that one third of the au pairs in Ireland were exploited. According to the study, 51% of them used au pair agencies and 49% used websites and word-of-mouth recommendation. Even though this study is not representative for the whole au pair industry, AuPairWorld supports the aim to prevent exploitation of au pairs.
At AuPairWorld, we are committed to our basic idea of au pairing and aim at informing au pairs about their rights. In fact, one of the reasons for the foundation of AuPairWorld was to promote transparency. For the security of our users, we conduct strict quality controls, provide personal support on the phone or by e-mail and operate an active complaint management.
These high-quality standards have proven to be successful: the number of registrations keeps growing. In 2012 alone, more than 200,000 au pairs worldwide registered on AuPairWorld. And more than 4,700 Irish host families used AuPairWorld in 2012. Besides, a high number of regular customers has used our website throughout the years.
Although our experience differs from the results of the study, it cannot be excluded that in some cases au pairs are exploited, regardless if they go through a regular or an online agency. This is why we support the call of MRCI, especially when it comes to setting guidelines regarding working hours, pocket money, duties and spare time. We are open to cooperation and discussions.