European Commission launches European Care Strategy


The European Commission has launched a European Care Strategy which aims to ensure quality, affordable and accessible care services across the European Union and improve the situation for both care receivers and the people caring for them, professionally or informally. The Strategy is accompanied by two Recommendations for Member States on the revision of the Barcelona targets on early childhood education and care, and on access to affordable high-quality long-term care.              

The Commission recommends that Member States draw up national action plans to make care in the EU more available, accessible and of better quality for all. In addition, the Commission recommends that Member States do more to attract more people, in particular men, to the care sector.

The Commission has committed to undertake the following actions:

  • Explore the creation of a new sectoral social dialogue for social services at EU level
  • Promote the establishment of a skills partnership under the Pact for Skills for the long-term care sector
  • Fund projects and research to assess the social and economic value of work and working conditions in the care sector
  • Review the application of EU standards governing working conditions
  • Map the current admission conditions and rights of long-term care workers from non-EU countries and explore the feasibility of developing EU-level schemes to attract care workers
  • Promote the opportunities available for early childhood education and care staff under the Erasmus+ programmes.

The Recommendations will be discussed by Member States with a view to adoption by the Council. According to the Commission proposals, Member States should inform the Commission on measures to implement the Recommendations one year after adoption. For each Recommendation, the Commission will publish an in-depth report within five years to give an overview of the state of play of implementation.

The European Care Strategy is available at: