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Espinoza-Castro, Bernarda; Weinmann, Tobias ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4582-5191; Lopez, Rossana Mendoza and Radon, Katja ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5271-3972 (2021): Working Conditions as Risk Factors for Depressive Symptoms among Spanish-Speaking Au Pairs Living in Germany-Longitudinal Study. In: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Vol. 18, No. 13, 6940

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Previous studies have shown poor working conditions and poor mental health among au pairs. However, there are limited longitudinal approaches to these conditions. Therefore, the main objectives of this study were to assess the occurrence of depressive symptoms longitudinally and to analyze the association between sociodemographic characteristics, working conditions and violence at work with depressive symptoms over time among Spanish-speaking au pairs living in Germany. A prospective cohort study was performed with three measurement intervals, which included 189 participants. Depressive symptoms were assessed by the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9). Generalized Estimating Equation (GEE) models were implemented to estimate the association between predictors and depressive symptoms. Au pairs who worked >40 h per week were more than three times more likely to experience depression than those who did not (OR: 3.47;95% CI: 1.46-8.28). In addition, those exposed to physical violence were almost five times more likely to suffer from depression (OR: 4.95;95% CI: 2.16-9.75), and au pairs who had bad schedule adaptation to social and family commitments had twice the risk of depression than those who did not (OR: 2.24;95% CI: 0.95-5.28). This knowledge could be of interest for future au pairs, host families, au pair agencies and policy makers. Together, they could improve awareness and monitoring of au pair working conditions.

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