The health consequences of neocolonialism for Latin American immigrant women working as caregivers in Spain: a multisite qualitative analysis

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Briones Vozmediano, Erica TulaBriones Vozmediano, Erica Tula - ORCID ID
Rivas Quarneti, Natalia
Gea Sánchez, MontserratGea Sánchez, Montserrat - ORCID ID
Bover Bover, Andreu
Carbonero, Maria Antonia
Gastaldo, Denise
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cc-by (c) Briones et al., 2020
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In Spain, most jobs available for Latin American immigrant women are in intimate labour (caregiving and domestic work). This work is usually performed under informal employment conditions. The objective of this study was to explain how the colonial logic mediates the experiences of Latin American women working in intimate labour in Spain, and the effects of such occupation on their health and wellbeing, using a decolonial theoretical framework. A multi-site secondary data analysis of qualitative data from four previous studies was performed utilizing 101 interviews with Latin American immigrant women working as caregivers in Spain. Three interwoven categories show how the dominant colonial logic in Spain creates low social status and precarious jobs, and naturalizes intimate labour as their metier while producing detrimental physical and psychosocial health consequences for these immigrant caregivers. The caregivers displayed several strategies to resist and navigate intimate labour and manage its negative impact on health. Respect and integration into the family for whom they work had a buffering effect, mediating the effects of working conditions on health and wellbeing. Based on our analysis, we suggest that employment, social, and health protection laws and strategies are needed to promote a positive working environment, and to reduce the impact of caregiving work for Latin American caregivers.
Journal or Serie
International Journal of Environmental Research And Public Health, 2020, vol. 17, núm. 21, p. 1-21