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6/8/20141 Universal and lasting peace can be established only if it is based upon social justice Bharti Birla ILO Moving Towards A Comprehensive Law For.

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Presentation on theme: "6/8/20141 Universal and lasting peace can be established only if it is based upon social justice Bharti Birla ILO Moving Towards A Comprehensive Law For."— Presentation transcript:

1 6/8/20141 Universal and lasting peace can be established only if it is based upon social justice Bharti Birla ILO Moving Towards A Comprehensive Law For Domestic Workers in India

2 6/8/20142 Role of Work and Labour Laws Substantive Provisions of Labour Laws Existing Labour Laws in India and Challenges Laws for the Unorganized Sector Overview of Domestic Work in India Some initiatives of Indian Government Need for a Comprehensive Legal Instrument for DWs Challenges for a legal instrument for DWs Way to Decent Work for Domestic Work Initiatives in India Outline

3 6/8/20143 Role of Work and Labour Laws Work and Labour Laws Work is central to peoples wellbeing Providing income, access to amenities, leading a productive and healthy life Paves way for broader social and economic advancement All is intricately related to employment and as such on the labour laws Purpose the Labour Law: Meeting Economic and Social Challenges Establishing a legal system that facilitates productive individual and collective employment relationships, and therefore a productive economy Providing a framework within which employers, workers can interact with regard to work-related issues achieving harmonious industrial relations Giving clear and constant reminder and guarantee of fundamental principles and rights at work and establishing the processes for implementation and enforcement of such principles.

4 6/8/20144 Substantive Provisions of Labour Legislation Right to collective bargaining Freedom of Association Collective settlement of disputes Right to strike Elimination of forced labour Elimination of discrimination in employment and occupation Elimination of child labour Existing Laws in India are categorized as laws relating to: Industrial Relations Wages Working Hours, Conditions of Services and Employment Equality and Empowerment of Women Deprived and Disadvantaged Sections of the Society Social Security Labour Welfare Employment & Training Others Close to 45 labour legislations exists for 7% of the organized sector workers The majority i.e. 93% of the workers are unorganized and remains unprotected and vulnerable as these laws may not be applicable

5 Labour Laws in India Challenges with existing laws in India Most workers are daily wage earners or self employed, with no provision for unemployment insurance Even when some protection or benefits exists for unorganized sector, it mostly follows a fragmented approach Most labour enactments deal with Regulation of work and work conditions (with/without grievance mechanism) Providing benefits such as social security, maternity, old age, pension, healthcare Enabling the workers to take benefits of the welfare schemes (social assistance) implemented by the state A comprehensive approach integrating all the above three elements into a single piece of legislation is generally not seen.

6 6/8/20146 Domestic Work and Labour Law Laws for the unorganized sector Because of the complexity and the nature of work in unorganized sector, tendency to look for individualistic solutions for each category of occupation Separate enactments for Beedi Workers (tobacco rolled in tendu (temburini) leaf), Construction workers, Mine workers etc. Unorganized Sector Social Security Act 2008, includes domestic workers Civil society movement in India is also pushing for a separate legislation for domestic workers in India rather than mere inclusion in existing labour laws. Key Issues There is a gap between those workers: Who are represented by trade unions and those who are not Between those who are covered by labour laws and those who are not Gender dimensions of these forms of exclusion are often particularly compelling ("Your Voice at Work" (Global Report), ILC, 88th session, Report I(B))

7 6/8/20147 INDIA INDIA NSS Data reported 4.75 million Domestic workers, with DW being largest sector of female employment in Urban India Approx 3.05 million women involved accounting for >12% of all women workers in urban India It is a fast growing sector (increased by 222% since ) (Chandrashekar and Ghosh, 2007) An overwhelming majority of women DWs – about 84% and 92% in urban and rural areas respectively – get wages much below the minimum wage (NCEUS 2007). Only 5 states in India have notified minimum wages for domestic workers. A significant number of men are employed as gardeners, guards and chauffeurs. But women invariably make up the overwhelming majority. Large number of domestic workers are from lower caste or ethnic minority communities and also includes child labour Domestic Work: Situational Analysis

8 Domestic Work: How Many? Cross Border Movements in South Asia Percentage of Female Migrants in South Asia Source: Migration and Gender in Asia by Tasneem Siddiqui, 2008 CountryTotal% of FemaleYear Nepal1,78,072< 1%2006 Bangladesh8,32,6095%2007 Sri Lanka2,17,30652%2007 Pakistan1,83, %2006 India4,54, %2005 Sectors of employment: Male labour: Unskilled, semi-skilled labourers predominantly in construction Women migrants from South Asia predominantly involved in domestic work This is followed by manufacturing. Small number of them work as Nurses (India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Bangladesh) Similar Destination Countries: Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea

9 Domestic Work: How Many? Legal Framework Emigration and Labour Related Acts in South Asia: Bangladesh: Emigration Ordinance 1982 India: Emigration Act, 1983 Nepal: Nepal Labour Act 2048, Labour (First Amendment) Act, 2054 (1988) Pakistan: Emigration Ordinance 1979 Sri Lanka: Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment Act, 1985 Education: Sri Lankan vs India, Bangladeshi, Nepali (80% illiterate or semi literate) Marital Status: 50% women workers of Bangladesh, Nepal, and Sri Lanka were married when they first migrated Age: Age group of Sri Lankan (21) women migrants during first migration was higher compared to Bangladesh (25) and Nepal.

10 6/8/ Domestic Work: How Many? Indias Initiatives Government of India has enacted the Unorganised Workers' Social Security Act, 2008, which covers Domestic Workers. Five States/UT (Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Karnataka, Rajasthan and Dadra and Nagar Haveli) have fixed minimum wages for DWs. (Tamil Nadu, Orissa) Tamil Nadu Manual Workers (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Work) Act, 1982 and establishment of Welfare Board for DWs and Maharashtra Domestic Workers Welfare Board Act The employment of children (below 15 years of age) in domestic work has been prohibited w.e.f. October, The Ministry of Labour & Employment (MoLE) in collaboration with the Department of Training and Technical Education, Government of NCT Delhi and ILO has started a Skill Development Initiative for Domestic Workers/ Household Assistants in Delhi. MoLE under the office of DGLW has formed a Task Force to look into the issues of Domestic Workers. Draft Bill proposed on Domestic Work, including NCWs Bill

11 6/8/ Work Like Any Other, Work Like No Other Need for a legislative instrument In India, DW are excluded from the major Labour Legislations, such as Minimum Wages Act 1948, Maternity Benefit Act 1961, Workmen's Compensation Act 1926, Inter State Migrant Workers Act 1976, Payment of Wages Act 1936, Equal Remuneration Act 1976, Employee's State Insurance Act, Employees Provident Fund Act, Payment of Gratuity Act, (Workmen, Establishment, Workplace, Employer) Lack of definitional clarity - because of the nature of the domestic work, it is often difficult to define who is a DW, live-in/part-time relationships, employers/ placement agencies and their regulation, workplace, home/place of stay, working conditions, wages (cash/in kind), rest periods, weekly offs etc. Given their vulnerability to dangerous, discriminatory and abusive working conditions, DWs warrant special attention rather than exclusion.

12 6/8/ Work Like Any Other, Work Like No Other Regulation of Placement Agencies An upsurge of placement agencies, which are managed by different players Type of Placement Agency Placement Agencies (Who call them selves as Registered Agencies) Private Placement Agencies (Not Registered) Cooperative Societies Civil Society Organization s/ Movements Registered Trade Unions Registered Placement Bodies backed by Unions or Civil Society Nature of Agency Registered – Different laws Private bodies Cooperative of workers Movements and rights based organizations Unionize DWsOrganize DWs Enrol Domestic workers as members No YesSome have DWs YesEnrolled as members Take Commiss- ions/Benefits/Charges Many DoYesMay take memberships Usually do not, but some may No commissions, but may charge for services May or may not charge Deal with Salaries Many DoYes (mostly)May deal in salaries Many doMay deal in salaries Many do

13 Key Challenges For A Comprehensive Law Major Challenges Lack of accurate and comparable data on domestic workers Varying definitions of domestic work and domestic workers Participation of all actors in the law making process, however Domestic workers are not organized and lack any voice and are represented by different civil society movements Trade Unions involvement is limited in unionizing workers and in the law making process Several versions of the bills for domestic workers drafted by different actors floating around Difference in opinion in choosing between minimum floor of benefits and conditions versus most optimal A debate on separate legislation for DWs versus including DWs in the existing labour laws

14 Moving Towards A Comprehensive Law Decent work for domestic workers Requirement for a comprehensive law, which includes Regulatory aspects (including placement agencies) Social security issues Welfare measures Access to training and skill development Grievance resolution mechanism, which is fast, effective, approachable and is not cost intensive Inclusion of domestic workers in the existing labour laws by making suitable amendments The resources necessary for implementation of the law, including Finances Implementation machinery Trained human resource need to be visualized simultaneously with the proposed law.

15 6/8/ ILO Initiatives in India Launch of Campaign Your work is important Aims to raise awareness about the rights of the domestic workers amongst the public, household employers, youth, RWAs, and domestic workers themselves. - Partnering with the Media - Street Plays in Delhi at Youth Hotspots Working with the Trade Unions/Movements To organize and unionize the domestic workers To spread awareness for decent work for domestic workers To train Domestic Worker Advocates Knowledge Creation and Dissemination One dedicated double issue of Labour File Journal on Domestic Workers Research studies on of different issues related to domestic work in India Technical Assistance To MOLE Member of the Task Force on Domestic Workers. Partnering in the Skill Development Initiative for Domestic Workers

16 6/8/ Reiko Tsushima Senior Gender Specialist Thank You Bharti Birla Project Coordinator ILO Subregional Office for South Asia (SRO-New Delhi)


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