Care workers and domestic workers are the heart of our economy. As both caregivers and people who need care, we cannot wait any longer for solutions that raise the wages and standards for care workers, and increase access to family-sustaining needs like affordable child care, long-term care, and paid leave.
Domestic workers are one of the fastest-growing workforces in the nation, yet nannies, housecleaners, and home care workers earn poverty wages, and have historically been excluded from worker protections. As a result, they often have no benefits, few legal protections, and little recourse or mechanisms to enforce their rights. After many years of domestic worker organizing (resulting in the passage of 12 state and municipal laws), the first-ever federal Domestic Workers Bill of Rights was introduced in the U.S. Congress in 2019, and reintroduced in 2021. This spring, we are working to raise awareness for this critical piece of legislation, while moving it toward eventual passage.
At the same time, care workers and #CareCantWait coalition partners are pushing Congress to pass historic investments in caregiving as part of the budget reconciliation bill, including a major investment in-home and community-based services (HCBS) for older adults and people with disabilities. These investments would require states to raise wages for the care workforce and expand access to services for people who urgently need them.
Care is the work that makes all other work possible. To honor that work, the National Workers Domestic Alliance will host Care Workers Can’t Wait! Domestic Worker Rally for Good Care Jobs on May 11th, in partnership with the Care Can’t Wait Coalition to discuss the urgency of good jobs for care workers.