Domestic Work and Welfare Values of Migrant Women in Modern Greece: The Juncture of a Dual Process of Exclusion


Based on survey data from extensive field work in Greece, we argue that migrant women workers in the domestic sector now face greater difficulties in accessing the social protection of the state than they did before the recession. Interviews conducted with these women demonstrate that they live in a new environment that leads them away from formal mechanisms of social protection, compelling them instead to adopt more individualized strategies in their work and life choices as a whole. This failure of the social state is due to a dual process of exclusion that arises from both the discriminatory practices that marginalize these women and a dramatic shift in how they themselves see the expensive and inefficient social protection offered to them. We conclude that this new environment has in fact intensified their social and welfare marginalization, dissociating them from communal and family-based support networks.