As Assembly Bill 1066, which would grant overtime pay to California farm workers, heads for a vote in the Assembly, farm workers and faith and civil rights groups are fighting for the votes needed to pass it.
The fight for farm worker overtime is going down to the wire in the current legislative session, which will adjourn at the end of August. And as Assembly Bill 1066, which would require it, moves through the legislature, Jewish and African-American organizations have made a commitment to win the votes it needs for passage.
Over 300,000 California housekeepers, nannies and personal attendants provide support and care to seniors and people with disabilities, putting in long hours caring for an estimated two million households.
Clocking In is a new online tool from Race Forward, a New York-based group whose self-described goal “is to build awareness, solutions and leadership for racial justice.” Its analysis finds disturbing trends for people of color and women employed in the U.S. service industry. This virtual resource allows service employees to share their real-life job experiences with other workers, consumers, employers and policymakers 24/7.
Clocking In sends participants on a virtual journey while offering activist information on a range of workplace issues. Visitors choose one of three employment portals representing the restaurant, retail or domestic industries.
Clicking the restaurant option, for example, brings up a screen that says: “Workers in the restaurant industry face race and gender discrimination daily! Click ‘Start’ to learn from Race Forward and Restaurant Opportunities Centers United (ROC) about how it happens and what YOU can do about it!”
Next is a choice to click a male or female character.
You can find us through Craigslist or fliers at the Laundromat. We live in your homes and prepare your meals. You leave beloved family members in our care. We come from around the globe, often leaving our children behind. But we’re invisible to most Americans. Who are we?
According to Ai-Jen Poo, Director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, there are 100 million domestic workers in countries throughout the world. In the U.S. they’re key to America’s 21st century economy, caring for children, the elderly and the disabled while family members participate in the workforce. Domestic work is rapidly expanding, she explains, and doesn’t have to represent a road to permanent poverty for its mostly-female workforce.
With 44 local affiliated groups in 26 cities, the Alliance has sponsored legislation throughout the nation to adopt the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights, providing for paid leave,
Domestic workers in California — and groups and people who support better employment conditions for them nationwide — are hailing a new bill of labor rights signed into law Thursday in Sacramento.
The signing of AB 241 ensures that domestic workers in private homes are paid overtime for the hours they work.
The law goes into effect on January 1, a year before similar but federal regulations announced this month begin, California state Assemblymember Tom Ammiano said in a statement. He is the main author of the bill.
“This is a big step for respecting and recognizing domestic work as real work, and the fight doesn’t stop here,” Marcela Escamilla, a San Francisco domestic worker, said in a statement released by Mujeres Unidas y Activas.
“The fire for this movement will now burn brighter for domestic workers across the country fighting for the same recognition.”
Mujeres Unidas y Activas,
Domestic workers, such as caregivers and nannies, make all forms of other work possible and play an increasingly significant role in the U.S. economy. However, a new national study found, on average, domestic workers earn little more than minimum wage and few receive benefits like Social Security, health insurance or paid sick days.
Conducted by the National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA) and the Center for Urban Economic Development at the University of Illinois at Chicago, the study offers a startling and provocative look into the often-invisible world of domestic workers. Based on interviews with 2,086 workers across the country, researchers found domestic workers face serious financial hardships and have little control over their working conditions.
As a critical part of the U.S. labor force, domestic workers help thousands of working families by enabling them to focus on their jobs. Yet, they are often paid well below the level needed to adequately support their own family.