For Immediate Release
July 28, 2022
Contacts: Valeria Ojeda-Avitia, (505) 615-3057
Christina Coleman, (301) 787-5871
WASHINGTON – National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA) President Ai-jen Poo testified during a hearing before the House Education and Labor Committee’s Subcommittee on Workforce Protections on the urgent need for Congress to pass the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights Act (H.R. 4826), legislation that will protect nannies, housecleaners, and home care workers from on-the-job discrimination and harassment. A recording of the hearing, “Essential but Undervalued: Examining Workplace Protections for Domestic Workers,” can be viewed here.
“As we speak, there are millions of working parents and family caregivers counting on nannies, home care workers and cleaners to enable them to work,” said Ai-jen Poo. “This is the work that produces the human potential in our children, the quality of life of our aging elders, and supports the dignity and independence of our loved ones with disabilities. And yet, the jobs are low-quality, low-wage jobs, where women work incredibly hard and still live in poverty, face rampant discrimination and harassment, and find themselves without a simple sick day when a pandemic hits. The Domestic Workers Bill of Rights Act, H.R. 4826 is designed to specifically address this reality and finally recognize this essential workforce for the dignified profession it is.”
The National Domestic Workers Bill of Rights is national legislation that ensures domestic workers are included in common workplace laws while creating new protections and stronger ways to enforce them. The bill was introduced in Congress by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Senator Ben Ray Luján (D-NM) and Representative Pramila Jayapal (WA-07) and is co-sponsored by more than 100 lawmakers in the House. Ten states and two major cities have already passed Domestic Workers Bills of Rights at the state and local level; the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights Act would extend workplace protections to millions of domestic workers across the country regardless of their zip code.
If passed, the legislation would:
Ensure domestic workers have paid sick leave to take care of themselves or their families.
Extend civil rights protections, including against workplace harassment, to domestic workers.
Afford domestic workers the right to meal and rest breaks.
Establish written agreements to ensure clarity on roles and responsibilities.
Protect against losing pay due to last minute cancellations.
Read Ai-jen Poo’s full remarks as prepared for delivery here. For more information, or to schedule an interview with Ai-jen Poo, please reach out to [email protected].