Overtime. Meal breaks. Rest breaks. Sick leave. These are basic employee rights that many people take for granted. But not domestic workers in California. Nannies, housekeepers, in-home caregivers and others throughout our state don’t have these same labor protections. Yet.
Assemblyman Tom Ammiano of San Francisco is working on a bill to ensure basic labor protections for domestic workers throughout California. His proposal would include:
- Meal breaks and rest breaks
- Overtime pay for time worked over 40 hours per week
- Three paid sick days
- Designated sleeping hours
- Access to kitchen facilities for meal preparation
- Workers’ compensation
The importance of securing these basic labor protections for domestic workers in California cannot be understated.
A majority of California domestic workers are Latina; more than 90 percent of California domestic workers are female. According to Assemblyman Ammiano notes that, “These women are the last group that’s still left out of labor law.”
A prior version of the domestic workers’ protection bill was vetoed by Governor Brown last year. The bill passed both houses before falling to Governor Brown’s veto. The current version eliminates a 30-day-notice requirement prior to termination, CalOSHA protections and annual cost of living increases. The current version of the domestic workers’ protection bill includes exemptions from the requirements for low-income employers.
New York is currently the only state in the U.S. that has extended basic labor protections like those being fought for by Assemblman Ammiano to domestic workers.
Source: Huffington Post, “Domestic Workers Bill In California Brings Housekeepers & Nannies To The Streets,” March 7, 2013