A new association has been set up to devise guidelines and regulate au pair agencies in New Zealand.
The president of the New Zealand Au Pair Association, Cecilia Robinson, says it was established at the international association's request.
She says it was deemed necessary after some horror stories emerged about the industry in this country, including au pairs being forced to live in caravans in the middle of winter and being paid much less than the minimum wage.
And she says some host families have been assigned workers with no childcare experience.
Ms Robinson says there are 13 known au pair agencies in New Zealand, and only two of those have shown interest in joining the association.