Aging | Country Initiatives | Global Ageing News | October 21, 2023
Labor Mobility to Support the Aged Care Workforce
Global Ageing Network members enjoyed a lively webinar on September 28 that explored challenges and solutions for labor mobility to help meet the need for a sufficient and qualified workforce. Labor Mobility Partnerships (LaMP) CEO Rebekah Smith set the stage for the training noting that by 2050, there will be 1.2 billion people over age 80 in Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries while working age populations are shrinking.
Speakers focused on the need for partnerships and collaboration. Secretary of State for Migration in Spain Gladys Roy designed a pilot program in which 200 Columbian students will be trained to provide direct care. Half will remain in Columbia and half will go to Spain to work on a student visa. Once in Spain, their employer will support further training towards a nursing degree. Through this creative initiative, the student visa is the vehicle for mobility.
Mansur Dalal of India provided a sobering reminder that for every two nurses trained in India, one leaves. As a result, he is exploring a model to train nurses in India who will leave to earn and subsequently return to India. Mansur said emphatically that we need a global professionalized workforce that is mobile. “This is an issue whose time has come.”
Kimberly Geronimo noted that we need to focus on people who are not fully trained and suggested that the private sector needs to build a training program that works for both sending and destination countries. It was widely acknowledged that the prime motivation for mobility is remittances and the opportunity to assist other generations. Geronimo suggested that this issue is a puzzle—one in which all of the pieces are out there, and we need to work together to put them together.