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Guaranteeing the employment rights of domestic workers

The PACE’s Standing Committee has called on member States to guarantee the social protection and labour rights of domestic workers, in particular normal hours of work, periods of daily and weekly rest and annual leave, minimum wage coverage, social security protection, occupational safety and health and decent working conditions.

“There is an urgent need to recognise domestic work as ‘real work’,” said the parliamentarians, meeting in Prague. Domestic workers “perform activities in the privacy of households, often have only precarious status, and are thus often invisible, underpaid and/or undeclared – and not covered by labour legislation,” they added.

The resolution unanimously adopted by the Standing Committee, based on the report by Viorel Riceard Badea, (Romania, EPP/CD), recommends setting up mechanisms to enforce the law, including multilingual labour inspectorate teams, an easily accessible complaint mechanism, legal assistance to domestic workers and awareness-raising campaigns. The adopted text also highlights the need to protect the numerous women who work in this sector against all forms of abuse, violence and harassment.