NDWA statement on ILO report

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 9, 2013

Contacts: CJ Frogozo, CJ@FitzGibbonMedia.com, 310.570.2622
Rachel Tardiff, Rachel@FitzGibbonMedia.com, 202.746.1507

Statement from Linda Burnham, National Research Director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, on the International Labour Organization’s First Global Report on Domestic Workers:

"The report issued today by the International Labour Organization, Domestic Workers Across the World: Global and Regional Statistics and the Extent of Legal Protection, provides context and confirmation for the research findings about domestic workers in the U.S. released by National Domestic Worker Alliance in late November. The ILO report carefully documents the low wages, long hours, vulnerability to abuse and absence of legal protections for a global workforce of more than 52 million domestic workers. NDWA’s report, Home Economics: The Invisible and Unregulated World of Domestic Work, tells the story of the overwhelmingly female and largely immigrant workers who experience these conditions in the U.S. Both reports stand as a urgent call to action to provide labor protections and improve the working conditions of this vital and growing sector of the labor force."

Xiomara Corpeno, Organizing Director at CHIRLA, an NDWA affiliate, and leader in the campaign for a California Domestic Worker's Bill of Rights also commented on the report. Corpeno said, "The research carried out by the ILC supports a deeply held concern of ours that an astounding number of household workers in the U.S. are excluded from very basic accommodations afforded to any other worker, such as rest periods, overtime pay, or maternity protection. It is a travesty that less than ten per cent of all household workers in the world (or 5.3 million) are protected by national labor laws. While other nations move forward with incremental protections for household workers, we seek no less from our nation’s leaders." Across the US, domestic workers are working to pass basic labor protections for domestic workers in CA, MA, and IL, following the success of the NY Domestic Worker's Bill of Rights. At the same time, the federal government now has the opportunity to approve regulations that would ensure minimum wage and overtime for homecare workers.

Read the full ILO report here.

Last year, the National Domestic Workers Alliance published “Home Economics: The Invisible and Unregulated World of Domestic Work,” a first-of-it’s-kind report on domestic work in the United States. The study, which found that 48% of workers earn wages too low to adequately support a family and many are subjected to extreme verbal, psychological, and physical abuse, focused on four primary aspects of the domestic work industry, which were:

  • Low pay, lack of benefits and their impact on the lives of workers and their families;
  • Lack of enforceable contracts and substandard conditions of work;
  • Hazardous working conditions, on-the-job injuries and the lack of access to health care;
  • Abuse at work with no recourse or remedy.

Read Full NDWA Report Here: http://www.domesticworkers.org/homeeconomics