Shillong, June 13: Domestic workers under the umbrella of North Eastern Regional Domestic Workers Movement in collaboration with the All Meghalaya Domestic Workers Union (AMDWU) and Ferrando Domestic Workers Alliance (FDWA) today organized a conference with political leaders, bureaucrats and other Union representatives and discussed issues related to domestic work.
Representatives of NERDWM, AMDWU and FDWA pointed out that domestic work is an occupation which required a range of skills from basic to specialised and asked the governments to include domestic work in the list of scheduled employments under the Minimum Wages Act 1948 for fixing and enforcing of minimum wages as well as establishment of Domestic Workers Welfare Board in the State.
They also urged the Central and State Governments to take effective and appropriate measures to ensure that domestic workers are able to exercise their labour rights and bring out legislation to enable domestic workers receive treatment that is not less favourable than what other workers generally benefit under laws and legislations.
Addressing the conference, Labour Minister, Ampareen Lyngdoh said that with regard to fixing of minimum wages for domestic workers, if other states has already taken the initiative to schedule domestic workers under minimum wage act and also fixed wages for the same, the state can also look into the matter and do the needful.
Nongthymmai MLA, Jemino Mawthoh, stated that appropriate implementation of mechanisms should be developed at the State level to ensure protection and security of domestic workers and to facilitate workers access to decent working conditions.
Social activist, Angela Rangad said that it was mandatory for the state government to revise the minimum wages from time to time atleast not less than once a year. She also stressed that proper healthcare or free healthcare should be provided in various CHCs/PHCs and different government hospitals rather than spending crores of money in the implementation of MHIS.
Others present in conference included President Nazareth Hospital workers union, Mr. Kenneth Swer, assistant general Secretary AITUC Shillong, Richard Thabah.
On June 16, a rally to commemorate Domestic Workers Day will be taken out in Shillong from Madan Malki to Sri Aurobindo hall.