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Disposable Domestics- Grace Chang

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1 Disposable Domestics- Grace Chang
Chapter Three: The Nanny Visa- The Bracero Program Revisited

2 What is the Bracero Program?

3 What is the Nanny Visa? 1953: Women in El Paso, Texas: Association for Legalized Domestics “Anglo women…housewives calling for a program to facilitate hiring of Mexican women to work for them as maids” (107). Zoë Baird Controversy: Lost nomination for US attorney general

4 The Nanny Visa (Cont.) “Many argues that what she did should not be considered a crime, that the law should be changed to make it easier (and legal) for working women or two-career couples to do what she had done” (108). Feb. 1993: Federal Commission on Immigration Reform met to hear testimony about the need for some type of immigration program for domestic workers Two plans suggested: ( )

5 Nanny Visa (Cont.) Didn’t happen, but Chang believes people will continue to demand such a “program” as long as there is a need This need is exactly what Hochschild elaborates upon in her analysis of “The Nanny Chain”.

6 Why does Chang discuss the Bracero Program in order to lead into her analysis of the proposed “nanny visas”? To show that there is a history of using immigrants for labor while also denying them the right to become a part of our society or benefit from our society’s laws and protections “The notion that immigrant can be treated as expendable commodities, to be used then expelled from the country or simply from any public concern, has guided immigration law and labor practice throughout US history” (93).

7 To demonstrate that just as men were used for agricultural labor, women may be considered as the next “bracero(a)” and may be exploited and abused n the same way braceros were. “While the proposals for a home-care worker visa ultimately did not gain momentum, similar policy proposals will undoubtedly arise again. When they do, it will be crucial that provisions are made to ensure fair wages and conditions for household workers and some means of holding employers accountable to these standards…without these, immigrant women are in danger of becoming the new “braceras”— a pair of arms to rock the cradle or scrub the floors for their employers, then go home tired and empty handed to their own children” (116).

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