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Who Uses Paid Domestic Labor in Australia? Choice and Constraint in Hiring Household Help

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  • Janeen Baxter
  • Belinda Hewitt
  • Mark Western
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    Abstract

    This paper investigates why some Australian households use paid help with domestic labor while others do not. Consistent with earlier studies, the analysis examines hypotheses relating to resources, objective demand, and gender attitudes. Additionally, this paper examines the impact of attitudes toward using paid domestic labor, an area that has not been investigated previously. The findings suggest that resources and objective demand provide the parameters within which employing household help is made possible or necessary, but beliefs about the appropriateness of this strategy also play a role in determining whether Australian households use paid domestic labor. The paper concludes that understanding whether Australian households pay for domestic help is dependent not just on the level of resources and objective demand but also on whether individuals view paid domestic help as an appropriate strategy for undertaking domestic work.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Feminist Economics.

    Volume (Year): 15 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 1-26

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    Handle: RePEc:taf:femeco:v:15:y:2009:i:1:p:1-26

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    Related research

    Keywords: Paid domestic labor; housework; attitudes; gender; JEL Codes: J12; J16; J22;

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    Cited by:
    1. Halldén, Karin & Stenberg, Anders, 2013. "The Relationship between Hours of Domestic Services and Female Earnings: Panel Register Data Evidence from a Reform," Working Paper Series 4/2013, Swedish Institute for Social Research.
    2. Ali Fakih & Walid Marrouch, 2013. "Who hires foreign domestic workers? Evidence from Lebanon," CIRANO Working Papers 2013s-36, CIRANO.
    3. Fakih, Ali & Marrouch, Walid, 2012. "Determinants of Domestic Workers' Employment: Evidence from Lebanese Household Survey Data," IZA Discussion Papers 6822, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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