Domestic Worker Rights

‘Hunger or the Virus’: COVID-19 & Informal Workers

Among the world’s most vulnerable workers are those marginalized within their economies and societies, namely the women and labor migrants who predominate in the informal economy, where they perform valuable work in low-wage jobs as janitors, domestic workers, agricultural workers, home healthcare workers, market vendors, day laborers and others. Today, many of these workers are… [READ MORE]

Domestic Workers: Healing, Growing, Taking Action

As long-time union activists helping domestic workers form unions and get a voice on the job, Andrea Del Carmen Morales Pérez and Librada Maciel found themselves fighting burnout—from stress, from nonstop work and from unrecognized trauma they carried with them for decades after the abuse they experienced cleaning homes and caring for employers’ families. But… [READ MORE]

Honduran Domestic Workers Join Newly Formed Union

Domestic workers in Honduras increasingly are exercising their rights on the job in the country, where they have few labor law protections and so are especially vulnerable to abuse. More than 100 workers recently joined SINTRAHO (Sindicato Nacional de Trabajadoras del Hogar), National Domestic Workers Union, which in October became the first legally registered domestic… [READ MORE]

New Domestic Worker Organization in Ukraine

In Ukraine, domestic workers formed the country’s first organization for domestic workers, including childcare workers, this week. The organization’s formation is part of a growing global movement to assert the rights of this vast, mostly hidden and  primarily female workforce, as laid out in International Labor Organization (ILO) Convention 189, Decent Work for Domestic Workers. The… [READ MORE]

Domestic Workers in Mexico Win Landmark Rights Law

Legislation requiring written contracts, paid vacation and annual bonuses for domestic workers passed Mexico’s House and Senate and is expected to be signed into law by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador. The landmark law, which also prohibits employers from hiring domestic workers younger than age 15, requires employers provide at least a day-and-a-half off each… [READ MORE]

Kuwait Union Opens Doors to All Migrant Workers

The Kuwait Trade Union Federation (KTUF) this week celebrated the relaunch of a migrant worker office within its headquarters to help address legal cases related to wage theft or other forms of exploitation brought by migrant workers, including domestic workers, in the country. Two-thirds of Kuwait’s 4.5 million residents are migrant workers, including approximately 660,000… [READ MORE]

Marie Constant: Empowering Domestic Workers in Lebanon

Marie Constant has worked as a domestic worker in Lebanon since 1997. Originally from Madagascar, Constant has been fortunate to have a good employer. But most migrant domestic workers are not so lucky. “In general, domestic workers [must] work from morning until evening with no specific break time and no holidays,” she says, speaking in French… [READ MORE]

Racial Equality Tops Domestic Workers Meeting in Brazil

Some 40 domestic workers from 17 countries across North and South America and the Caribbean shared organizing tactics, hammered out resolutions and participated in Solidarity Center training on gender-based violence at work at a recent conference in São Paulo, Brazil. The conference is one of a series of regional planning meetings domestic workers around the… [READ MORE]

Ensuring Access to Justice for Workers in Forced Labor

When Fauzia Muthoni arrived in Qatar from Kenya to work as a receptionist and earn money to support her family, the labor agent traveling with her informed Muthoni the job was in Saudi Arabia and escorted her to another plane. She tried calling her family, but realized her sim card did not work in the… [READ MORE]

Decent Work Forum: ‘With a Union, We May Fight Together’

Ending human trafficking. Ensuring all employers treat workers fairly. Giving voice to migrant workers around the world. Creating a world in which women are treated equally to men. These are some of the broad goals participants at the Solidarity Center Forum on Decent Work Forum for Agricultural Women and Domestic Workers identified in a morning… [READ MORE]