The Contribution of Non-UK EU Workers in the Social Care Workforce in Scotland

The Gathering 2018

Year of publication
Ipsos MORI

The specific objectives of the research were two-fold:

  1. to provide robust estimates of the number of non-UK EU workers in specified adult social care and childcare sub-sectors (adult day care, care at home, day care of children, childminding, housing support, and nurse agencies).
  2. to provide insights into the specific roles and contributions of those workers from the perspective of both employers and non-UK EU workers.

The research comprised two consecutive strands: a mixed-mode survey of 1,572 employers from across the social care sector; and follow up qualitative interviews with 20 employers who took part in the survey, as well as with 10 workers.

Key Findings:
The estimate of the percentage of people employed within adult social care and childcare that are non-UK EU nationals is 5.6%, equating to 9,830 workers.
In both percentage and absolute terms, non-UK EU workers were more prevalent in private sector services (6.4% +/- 1.6%; 5,410 staff), than in voluntary sector services (5.4% +/- 1.8%; 2,730) and public sector services (3.7% +/- 2.1%; 1,510).
The survey highlighted that the perceived ease of recruiting staff varied significantly depending on the types of post being recruited for.
Although most care service managers who took part in the survey had not experienced increased difficulty recruiting and retaining staff in the last 12 months, the qualitative research confirmed that staffing was nonetheless a significant challenge for the sector.

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