Reviews policy strategies that align with the New York State Domestic Workers Bill of Rights, provides findings from surveys of domestic workers and employers, and outlines areas for further research and potential policy strategies.
“[T]his brief describes a range of issues that the [New York City Communities that Work Partnership (CTWP)] is exploring as it considers how workforce development strategies can be developed to support nannies and their employers toward greater clarity on employer and worker responsibilities, improvements in job quality, and improvements in the quality of child care delivered. The partnership’s work is in [its] early stages, with completion of a workforce development framework planned….Partners also plan to begin rollout of initial training programs…” (p.3).

“The [partnership] is built on a long-standing collaboration among organizations that worked together to pass the New York State Domestic Workers Bill of Rights (BOR). In 2010, the BOR law granted domestic workers the right to paid overtime at time-and-a-half wage rates, a day of rest every seven days, and other labor protections from which they had been previously excluded. Passage of this BOR in New York sparked a national movement, and since 2010, six states have passed similar bills” (p.2).

CTWP’s “work has expanded to consider how they can address challenges that affect both workers and their employers through workforce development strategies…[They are exploring] how workforce development—including training and new credentials—could create a career lattice for New York City’s domestic workers to help them command higher wages and better working conditions” (p.2-3).

“The partnership is exploring the career aspirations of domestic workers, the qualifications and skill sets employers want domestic workers to possess, and the type of training that has the potential to benefit both domestic workers and employers” (p.3).

(Abstractor: Author and Website Staff)

Major Findings & Recommendations

The authors identify the following elements of the strategy to help improve job quality and workforce skills for domestic workers: •“Organizing high-road employers: [Hand in Hand (HiH), a national network of domestic workers]…has been pursuing a strategy to develop a network of high-road employers that are in a position to take the lead in efforts to change cultural norms and practices of the industry. HiH considers high-road employers to be those that understand their responsibilities as employers, including rights established by the BOR” (p.3). •“Understanding a wider range of employers’ practices beyond the high road:…few standards or common practices exist among employers. Employers providing jobs to domestic workers are fundamentally different from other employers in that they do not employ workers as part of a business.… Pay and working conditions vary among the employers surveyed. Over three-quarters of employers do not pay a defined hourly wage but rather compensate based on a weekly or monthly rate…. Challenges faced by employers vary considerably based on their own economic security” (p.4-5). •“Empowering workers to improve their own job quality through worker training:…Workers report strong interest in skills training. Most workers indicate that they do not have a desire to leave their field but that their career aspirations are to have a deeper impact on the people they care for. Workers view training as a way to acquire knowledge and skills and deepen their value to employers. Workers would value receiving specialized training and certification in topics that enhance their skills. Some of these include infant and toddler development and CPR” (p. 5). •“Developing a framework of core elements [that will make up a skills development program for domestic workers:]…Trainings will be accessible and offered within the cultural context of the domestic workers engaged. Trainings will impart knowledge and skills in a hands-on, dynamic learning environment and will measure success through demonstrated competencies. Initial trainings will be a series of shorter, specialized units with both in-person and online components. An initial pilot will be launched in Infant and Toddler Development, the curriculum for which was designed by the University of Minnesota, Center for Early Education and Development” (p. 6). (Abstractor: Author and Website Staff)