Skip to main content

Native-born American workers are not meeting current U.S. demands for care workers, whether for children, the elderly, or those with chronic illnesses. As a result, there are significant opportunities for migrant workers--opportunities to which women from many parts of the globe are responding. But because U.S. immigration quotas are not in synch with these needs, many potential care workers are entering the country without documentation. Temporary care work programs--though not unproblematic--may be the answer. This publication (based on a conference held at the Wilson Center in May of 2011) examines existing programs such as those in Canada and the European Union as possible models for U.S. policy. It also addresses the impact of current U.S. practices on migrants and their families and consider the legal and policy implications of temporary programs within the context of U.S. immigration laws and regulations.