Project descript BrennanAlthough Australia does not directly target care workers besides health professionals, proposed policy shifts in aged care and disability services are likely to increase demand for migrant workers.

This project probes the key policy and legislative developments that have shaped the intersection of migration and care in the past thirty years in both Australia and New Zealand. We conduct interviews with key stakeholders and analyze political party and ministerial statements, parliamentary debates, and employer, advocacy, and union materials.

We ask how the characteristics and conditions of migrant care workers differ from those of Australian-born care workers. We consider factors pushing a supply of Pacific Island-area workers to migrate (for example, from Indonesia, the Philippines, and Vietnam), and factors creating a demand for care work in the more developed Pacific Island nations.

This project is important not only to a achieving a more comprehensive understanding of how policy shapes care migration to Australia and New Zealand. It also offers an important comparison to North America and Europe as more-studied regions that receive care workers.



  • Deborah Brennan, University of New South Wales
  • Sara Charlesworth, RMIT University


  • Liz Adamson
  • Liz Hill
  • Joanna Howe
  • Fiona Macdonald


  • Centre for Sustainable Organizations and Work (CSOW)
  • United Voice,
  • The Centre for International Research on Care Labour and Equalities, University of Sheffield (CIRCLE)

Students & Associates

  • Myra Hamilton
  • Celestyna Galicki
  • Don Tennakoon
  • Monica O’Dwyer
  • Rasika Jayasuriya
  • Jenny Malone
  • Jyhene Kebsi
  • Sohoon Lee
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