MIL-OSI USA: McClellan Helps Introduce Bill to Protect Domestic Workers’ Rights

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Source: United States House of Representatives – Congresswoman Jennifer McClellan (Virginia 4th District)

Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Jennifer McClellan (VA-04) joined Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal (D-WA-07) and 121 House colleagues to introduce the National Domestic Workers Bill of Rights to extend crucial workplace protections to domestic workers across the United States. 

“For more than 400 years, the American economy was built on the backs of domestic workers – first through slavery, then through low-wage jobs lacking worker protections that most Americans enjoy. I come from a family of domestic workers, so I know firsthand the incredible contributions they make to families, communities, the economy, and our nation,” said Congresswoman McClellan. “Despite their invaluable impacts, domestic workers, who are predominantly women of color, were exempted from worker protections such as minimum wage, overtime pay, and anti-discrimination laws. While in the Virginia General Assembly, I championed passage of the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights to address these long-standing inequities in 2020 and 2021. Today, I am excited to build on that progress and fight to extend those protections to domestic workers nationwide.” 

The National Domestic Workers Bill of Rights addresses critical gaps in the current labor protection framework, including: 

  • Extending access to common workplace protections to domestic workers, such as paid overtime, paid sick days, and freedom from discrimination and harassment. 
  • Improving job quality by implementing new protections for domestic workers like written agreements, privacy protections, and more. 
  • Increasing Medicaid funding for home and health care services. 

Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Ben Ray Luján (D-NM) introduced the Senate companion legislation.

McClellan is a long-term advocate for worker protections and labor rights. While in the General Assembly, McClellan led passage of laws comprising the Virginia Domestic Workers Bill of Rights in 2020 and 2021 to make Virginia the first state in the South to extend worker protections to domestic workers. In April, McClellan hosted a roundtable with care and domestic workers to discuss the care economy and the challenges care workers face.