While research exists on the precarious nature of international migrant care work, the impact of the inequitable distribution of care resources on the well-being of women caregivers and their families is unknown. Both sending and receiving countries of migrant care labour benefit from the care work of female migrant caregivers, yet there is little consideration of the cumulative physical and mental health consequences that performing this care work has on these women. In this transnational study, the lecturer draws on data collected between Canada and ten key informant interviews in the Philippines to better understand how socioeconomic and gendered conditions within countries that both send and receive migrant care labour shape the lived experiences of women caregivers as well as their families. Fieldwork conducted in the Philippines focused on the primary issues of how transnational systems produce these conditions of vulnerability for women and the level of protective mechanisms available from the Philippines to support them and their families. The study is ethnographic in nature, given its emphasis on exploring the lived experiences of the women caregivers, and how their positions are shaped by intersecting macro-, meso-, and micro-level forces. These insights have been critical to understanding the influence of the Philippines on the social, economic, and political circumstances that give rise to and facilitate sophisticated systems of recruitment and migrant labour management practices, and the complex effects they have on women’s health.
About the lecturer
Andrea Bobadilla is a PhD candidate in the Health and Rehabilitation Sciences program in the field of Health Promotion at Western University in London, Ontario, Canada. Her research focuses on intersections of Canadian immigration and health policy and its effects on migrant health. She is also a Doctoral Associate with the Gender, Migration, and the Work of Care project with the University of Toronto’s Centre for Global Social Policy. Her previous research includes a critical discourse analysis of policies governing asylum-seeking populations as well as her Master’s research on the effects of provincial health care coverage eligibility on new permanent residents and health care providers. Andrea is also a community organizer working with groups across the Greater Toronto Area to advocate for improved, equitable access to health services for all migrants.