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Nannies And Other Domestic Workers Shortchanged, On Average

On average, nannies make about $11/hour, according to a recent survey released by the National Domestic Workers Alliance. Housekeepers and caregivers fare slightly lower on the pay scale, averaging around $10/hour nationwide.

Of the over 2,000 domestic workers interviewed for the study - called Home Economics: The Invisible and Unregulated World of Domestic Work - discrepancies in pay were noted based on the skin color, immigration status and ethnic origin of the worker.

Nannies or other domestic workers who "live in" were found to make substantially less than their live-out or commuting counterparts. The median hourly wage for live-in nannies was $6.76; for those who did not live with their employers, the median salary was $11.55.

An estimated 800,000 caregivers, housecleaners and nannies work directly for families, meaning they are not placed by a staffing company. A majority of those who participated in the survey did not receive health care benefits through their domestic employment nor did they receive sick days. Less than 10 percent of those who responded said their employers paid into Social Security for them.

The California Domestic Workers Bill of Rights, vetoed in October by Governor Jerry Brown, was an attempt to extend labor protections to nannies, caregivers and housecleaners in our state. The bill included provisions for overtime pay, mandatory meal and rest breaks after a certain number of hours worked and improvements in conditions for live-in workers.

Source: New York Daily News, "Nannies are underpaid and overworked: survey," November 27, 2012

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