The Inbox

ILO adopts new standards for domestic workers

AP Photo/Mohammad abu Ghosh
Delegates at the 100th annual Conference of the International Labour Organization (ILO) adopted new labor standards which aim to improve the working conditions of millions of domestic workers worldwide.

Protecting women and girls

Each of ILO's 183 member states — represented by two government delegates, one employer, and one worker delegate — voted to adopt the international treaty "Convention on Domestic Workers 2011" and the accompanying Recommendation, which provides a detailed guidance on how to apply the Convention.

In its introductory text, the 2011 Convention says that "domestic work continues to be undervalued and invisible and is mainly carried out by women and girls, many of whom are migrants or members of disadvantaged communities and who are particularly vulnerable to discrimination in respect of conditions of employment and work, and to other abuses of human rights."

Humane rules

The new ILO standards set out that domestic workers around the world who care for families and households, must have the same basic labor rights as those available to other workers:

1. Reasonable hours of work;
2. Weekly rest of at least 24 consecutive hours;
3. A limit on in-kind payment; and
4. Clear information on terms and conditions of employment — as well as respect for fundamental principles and rights at work including freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining.

Hidden numbers

Based on national surveys of 117 countries, ILO estimated 53 million domestic workers in the world but experts said there could be a hundred million considering that this kind of work is often hidden and unregistered.

ILO further reported that in developing countries, domestic workers make up at least four to 12 percent of wage employment. Around 83 percent of these workers are women or girls and many are migrant workers.

PH wage rates

According to the ILO Country Office in the Philippines, Filipino domestic workers receive half of the minimum wage in the National Capital Region. Meanwhile, less than half in other parts of the country while working much longer hours than other workers who are legally entitled to a minimum.

Though in the current administration, there are pending legislative bills that establish minimum labor standards and legal rights for domestic workers, similar bills filed in the last four to five years did not reach successful conclusion, the ILO Philippine Office reported.

"The newly adopted Convention, by establishing a global set of minimum standards is expected to give further impetus to these on-going efforts, and also to provide a platform for more countries to engage in a process of reform to bring domestic workers within the mainstream of the labor and social protection," the office said in its press statement.

"Social dialogue has found its reflection in the results achieved here," concluded Department of Labor and Employment Undersecretary Hans Leo Cacdac, the government delegate from the Philippines who chaired the committee on Domestic Workers, as quoted by ILO's press release of the conference.

  • Heartbreaking texts from students on sinking S. Korea ferry
    Heartbreaking texts from students on sinking S. Korea ferry

    Heart-wrenching messages of fear, love and despair, sent by high school students from a sinking South Korean ferry, added extra emotional weight Thursday to a tragedy that has stunned the nation. Nearly 300 people -- most of them students on a high school trip to a holiday island -- are still missing after the ferry capsized and sank on Wednesday morning. Mom, I love you," student Shin Young-Jin said in a text to his mother that was widely circulated in the South Korean media. …

  • Philippines quarantines man over MERS fears
    Philippines quarantines man over MERS fears

    Philippine health authorities said Wednesday they have quarantined a Filipino who arrived from the Middle East because he tested positive for the deadly MERS virus. The man, who arrived in the Philippines on Tuesday, is not yet showing symptoms but has been isolated in hospital, Health Secretary Enrique Ona said. The Health Department is also quarantining the man's family and tracing the people who had contact with him during his flight to see if they may also be infected with the MERS or …

  • Philippine leader apologises over 'world's worst airport'
    Philippine leader apologises over 'world's worst airport'

    Philippine President Benigno Aquino publicly apologised on Wednesday for failures in air conditioning at Manila airport, already named by an online travel guide as the world's worst. The fresh debacle at Terminal 1, used by foreign airlines, came as millions of Filipinos begin travelling for the Easter holidays during one of the hottest months of the year. The transportation ministry also issued a separate public apology Wednesday, on the eve of four-day Easter holidays in the Catholic …

  • PH, China, Malaysia negotiating hostages’ release

    The Philippines and China are now working with Malaysian authorities in negotiating with the kidnappers of the Chinese tourist and Filipina worker who were abducted from an island resort near Semporna in Sabah on April 2. Speaking at a press conference after the Putrajaya Forum 2014 in Kuala Lumpur where he delivered a speech on transnational and organized crime on Tuesday, Malaysian Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr. Ahmad Zahid Hamidi disclosed that Filipino authorities, in particular, are working …

  • N. Korea protests to UK over Kim Jong-Un hair poster
    N. Korea protests to UK over Kim Jong-Un hair poster

    North Korea has written an official letter of complaint to Britain over a London hair salon's advert implying leader Kim Jong-Un has a bad hairstyle, the Foreign Office confirmed Thursday. The Stalinist state has failed to see the funny side of a discount haircuts advert featuring Kim at the M&M Hair Academy in Ealing, west London. …

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Heartbreaking texts from students on sinking S. Korea ferry

    Heartbreaking texts from students on sinking S. Korea ferry

    AFP News - Thu, Apr 17, 2014
    Heartbreaking texts from students on sinking S. Korea ferry

    Heart-wrenching messages of fear, love and despair, sent by high school students from a sinking South Korean ferry, added extra emotional weight Thursday to a tragedy that has stunned the nation. Nearly 300 people -- most of them students on a high school trip to a holiday island -- are still missing after the ferry capsized and sank on Wednesday morning. Mom, I love you," student Shin Young-Jin said in a text to his mother that was widely circulated in the South Korean media. …

  • Centipede Bursts from Snake's Stomach

    Centipede Bursts from Snake's Stomach

    LiveScience.com - Thu, Apr 17, 2014
    Centipede Bursts from Snake's Stomach

    A group of researchers stumbled upon a grisly scene during a field study in Macedonia last year: a dead nose-horned viper with a centipede's head sticking out of its ruptured abdomen. "All of us were astonished, as nobody has ever seen something like this," Ljiljana Tomovi?, a herpetologist at the University of Belgrade, told Live Science in an email. The remnants of the death match were discovered when one researcher, Dragan Arsovski, turned over a stone, Tomovi? The unfortunate nose-horned …

  • Why Portland Reservoir Was Flushed After Teen Peed in It

    Why Portland Reservoir Was Flushed After Teen Peed in It

    LiveScience.com - 4 hours ago
    Why Portland Reservoir Was Flushed After Teen Peed in It

    Officials in Portland, Ore., are flushing 38 million gallons of public drinking water after a 19-year-old was caught on camera urinating into an open reservoir on Wednesday (April 16). As expected, the sample came back clean, Jaymee Cuti, a spokeswoman for the Portland Water Bureau, told Live Science. Officials acknowledged there was little public health risk from a small amount of urine in an open reservoir that is presumably exposed to the droppings of wild animals all the time. Bureau …

POLL
Loading...
Poll Choice Options