Remembering and Honoring May Day featuring Hand in Hand: The Domestic Employers Network

by | May 5, 2024 | Domestic Staffing, Staffing | 0 comments

May Day, observed on the 1st of May, is recognized worldwide as International Workers’ Day or Labour Day, which is a day commemorating the historic struggles and gains made by workers and the labor movement. The origin of this day as a day for workers’ rights dates back to the late 19th century in the United States, where labor unions first advocated for better working conditions, including an eight-hour workday. We’re remembering and honoring May Day by celebrating the wins for domestic employees nationwide.

The day became associated with workers’ rights following the Haymarket affair in Chicago in 1886, where a peaceful rally in support of workers striking for an eight-hour day turned violent. The event had a profound impact on labor movements across the world. Consequently, May 1 was chosen as International Workers’ Day by the Second International, an organization of socialist and labor parties, in 1889, in memory of the Haymarket affair.

Today, May Day is celebrated in many countries around the world with parades, demonstrations, and speeches by workers and their labor unions. In some places, it is a public holiday, while in others, it is a day of protest and advocacy for workers’ rights. Several states are now taking domestic workers’ rights into consideration far more than ever before, including New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Washington, and California. Below is a summary from a fantastic resource group, Hand in Hand: The Domestic Employers Network. By remembering and honoring May Day as a hallmark of worker’s rights, we move forward with creating a better tomorrow.

New Jersey
After three years of fierce advocacy by domestic workers, employers, and allies, we won a Domestic Workers Bill of Rights in New Jersey covering over 50,000 workers across the state. The bill goes into effect July 1st, 2024 and Hand in Hand is gearing up to begin an on the ground canvassing campaign and new workshops to educate employers about their obligations under the new law.

In 2019, Hand in Hand helped to pass legislation in Philadelphia that provides some of the best protections for domestic workers in the country. However the bill remains largely unenforced due to lack of funding for education and enforcement. We are mobilizing employers to increase funding to the Office of Worker Protections to make these rights a reality.

We are working with the Seattle Domestic Worker Coalition and the Domestic Workers Standards Board to ensure that Seattle domestic workers have access to paid time off. Statewide, we are mobilizing home care employers to support the groundbreaking long-term care benefit for Washingtonians.

Today Hand in Hand joined our worker partners in Sacramento to rally for a more just home care system that ensures older Californians and people with disabilities have access to the support and care they need and that care workers are paid fairly for their invaluable work.

Hometown Nannies plus advocates for the fair and equitable treatment of domestic workers and we aim to help foster a positive working environment and relationship between employers and workers. Contact us today to see our stress-free, seamless process and how we can help you.