Survey reveals wide disparity in labor standards for nannies despite decades of existing legal protections
BOSTON, MA: On January 11th 2016, Human Trafficking Awareness Day, the Matahari Women Workers’ Center will announce the findings of its first ever Nanny Census. Matahari will be joined by Ms. Cynthia Mark, Chief of the Fair Labor Division of the Office of the Attorney General. Through the Census, Matahari surveyed over 350 nannies, au pairs, and other childcare providers in Greater Boston about their pay and working conditions. Nannies were surveyed in Cambridge, Brookline, Jamaica Plain, the South End, and other neighborhoods where there are high concentrations of nannies. The press conference will take place on Monday, January 11th, 2016 at 1 pm at the Matahari office, 50 Milk Street, 16th Floor, Boston.
The work that makes all other work possible: Nannies enable their employers to go to work everyday secure in the knowledge that their children are in caring hands. Thousands of families in the Boston area rely on nannies, as well as adult caregivers and housecleaners, in order to pursue their careers. Despite their vital position in the economy, nannies and other domestic workers are frequently undervalued, underpaid, and unprotected.
The Census revealed that:
- There is a wide disparity in pay among nannies in Greater Boston, with some surveyed nannies receiving as little as $4 per hour.
- The vast majority of surveyed nannies who are working overtime are not receiving the time and a half pay to which they have been entitled for over 40 years under state law.
- Nannies need paid time off, particularly paid sick days, so that they are not forced to choose to care for themselves or sick family members at the expense of losing a day’s pay.
Claudia Galindo, a nanny in Cambridge and a member leader with Matahari, says, “I love my job as a nanny and want to make sure that all nannies get the dignity they deserve so that they can provide the best possible care for the children entrusted to them. The Nanny Census allowed us to learn more about the experiences of local nannies. We found that many nannies and their employers are unaware of their rights and obligations under the law.” At the press conference, Matahari will announce the findings of the Census and explain why the findings matter to nannies, their families, and the families for which they care in Greater Boston. They will announce their strategy to address the issues emerging from the Census by raising awareness on city and state levels as they continue to push for successful enforcement of laws that protect the state’s domestic workers, including the Domestic Worker Bill of Rights, which came into effect in 2015.
About Matahari Women Workers’ Center: Matahari is a Boston based women’s community organization working to end gender violence and exploitation. Founded in 2002, Matahari is a leading force in advancing the rights of domestic workers, immigrant families, and survivors of violence and exploitation. Matahari is a steering committee member of the Massachusetts Coalition for Domestic Workers.