Cleaning assistants in Flanders are facing financial difficulties, with little to no profit being made by companies and low wages for cleaners. In response, Minister of Labor Jo Brouns (CD&V) has proposed increasing the price of service vouchers and eliminating the tax deduction to raise the wages of cleaning assistants.
Brouns previously advocated for more expensive service vouchers during budget discussions in September of last year, and has also called for the scrapping of the 200 million euro tax deduction currently in place for the service voucher system. While no immediate change is expected before the elections, it is likely that the next Flemish government will address the issue and potentially make the checks more expensive in their coalition agreement.
The sector has been facing financial difficulties for several years, with little to no profit being made by companies and low wages for cleaners. The price of a service voucher has remained at 9 euros without any adjustment or indexing for ten years. Additionally, families using the vouchers must contribute an extra 1.8 euros per check in tax, effectively making the check cost 7.2 euros per hour.
Wilfried Vandaele, N-VA faction leader, has acknowledged that the service voucher system is in need of adjustments in order to be sustainable, adding that the next Flemish government will need to review and potentially revise the system.