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May 2021 VODW Update

Welcome to our newsletter - as always, we'd appreciate it if you could share this with your network!

Domestic Work is Work!

''10 years and Still Waiting: Time to Ratify the ILO C189 Convention on Domestic Workers''

The ILO Convention 189 on domestic workers is 10 years old and to date, 32 countries have ratified this convention but this does not include the UK where The Voice of Domestic Workers and campaign allies have been campaigning to sign and ratify. In 2011, the government worker and employer delegates of the ILO adopted the Convention 189 and Recommendation on Decent Work for Domestic Workers which aimed to improve the living and working conditions of millions of domestic workers worldwide. ILO C189 is a strong recognition of the economic contribution and social value of domestic work and a call to address the inclusion of domestic workers in labour laws and social protection.

This year on June 16 we observe a double celebration because it is International Domestic Workers Day and the ten-year anniversary of the adoption of ILOC189.

While UK Domestic Workers could celebrate the historic implementation of ILO C189, there is a strong ground to advance our campaign to ensure domestic workers becoming once again the UK’s pride as a leading example of how vulnerable workers could be properly protected by restoring rights to be able to change employer without restrictions, renew their visas every year and be valuable citizens of the United Kingdom - and these rights could be strengthened in the ratification and implementation of ILO C189.

We are launching our campaign with our major allies Unite the Union, Kalayaan TUC, Anti-slavery International and Freedom United: ''10 years and Still Waiting: Time to Ratify the ILO C189 Convention on Domestic Workers'' to ratify ILO C189 on June 16 at 6 PM, Details to follow.

June 15, 5 PM: Listen to the experts! Migrant Women Matter. Register HERE.

A discussion on unique issues that migrant domestic workers face and what the grassroots organisation are doing to bring women voices to the fore to counter ‘migrant-victim’ narratives which is crucial in bringing the change. 

Domestic Work is Work!

You can help. Support and Act to guarantee rights for domestic workers.

Migrant Domestic Workers speak-out to UK’s refusal to reinstate our rights.

Tools to Transform

Tools to Transform is a workbook for Asian diaspora organising in Europe, a manual for organising Migrant Domestic workers and a lesson from The Voice of Domestic Workers in London written by Dr. Joyce Jiang.
 
Read more HERE.

Migrants Organise

Migrants Organise: Patients not Passports 

Join our campaign to stand in solidarity with people facing charges for NHS care and help resist the hostile environment policy and border controls in our healthcare.

Find-out more to pledge your support HERE.

Events and Updates

My Home is Not My Home Exhibition

My Home is Not My Home is one of the opening exhibits of People's History Museum from May 19 to July 2021. An exhibition and video installation made by 12 women from The Voice of Domestic Workers, a campaign and support group of migrant domestic workers.

This powerful and moving exhibition gives a unique and intimate insight into the hidden world of the domestic work carried out in private homes, from women whose stories tell of exploitation, abuse and ultimately, strength in solidarity and community.  These stories provide us with new ways to think about what we see (or don’t see) in migrant domestic workers, and ultimately, in ourselves.

Raising Awareness Meeting with Philippine Embassy, POLO-OWWA, SSS and Pag-ibig: May 2021

We held a raising awareness session with the Philippine Embassy, POLO-OWWA, SSS and Pag-ibig about the benefits of all the programmes and services offered by the Philippine government. Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) so acting officers could respond directly to the burning needs of the Filipino community in light of the pandemic. POLO-OWWA has stated the financial support for Filipinos impacted by Covid-19 coming from Philippine government and also food aid from POLO-OWWA.  

The Voice of Domestic Workers was this year Marilag Award recipient which honour and celebrate modern Filipino women who have made a change, inspired and empowered others.

Please watch the video:

Please watch

Labour Day

Labour Day is an annual holiday to celebrate the achievements of labour workforce.

For VODW, we commemorated this Labour Day by holding event Call to Action on April 30th in response to the negative decision of UK government to our petition to reinstate rights of migrant domestic workers and to highlight that migrant domestic worker are on 9 years without rights.

If you missed this event you can watch this here.

In Solidarity with Palestine

The Voice of Domestic Workers extend our Solidarity to all Palestinians. We hope to end the bloodshed and violence and hope for peace and unity.

Streets of London were restless after the bombing of Palestine.

Palestinian writer speaks on Palestinian resistance - YouTube

Please watch

Class Updates

ESOL 

In order to develop our English Communication, Leadership and Event Organiser Skills, the EFA tutors allowed us to join other groups in some workshops. Learners have the benefits to communicate confidently, be a successful event organiser, be able to access job opportunities, make our life easy because people can communicate properly, be a good leader and by attending other workshops we always find a new environment outside our VODW comfort zone. But before we start the class we play games for the warm up and  brainstorming. Sometimes we play games related to the previous lesson just to refresh and we don’t forget what we have discussed.

MediaCom

Every Saturday Mediacom Workshop gives us new ideas. We keep on looking for the best templates or applications that we can use in making campaign materials, graphics and video editing. For the last few weeks in May we learnt how to use Threads. This app is connected to Instagram, it is easier to design and can transcribe a simple text. The other one is Kapwing.com. This can be used in video editing without watermarks. The picture shown above is the kapwing template. And last Saturday we made a TikTok account. We are planning this app to be used to promote domestic work as decent work. 

Body, Mind and Wellness

It’s very difficult the current situation of the Migrant Domestic Workers especially when the government responds a negative decision for the petition made by The Voice of Domestic Workers and other allies but we are still hoping and working on it that the government change their mind and give a chance to all Migrant Workers to be legalise here in the United Kingdom and that is our lesson. Our tutor always helps us to do campaign materials that can be used to promote our rights. He always keeps in our mind the importance of Domestic Workers in one country especially here in the UK. Because here in the UK Domestic Workers often discriminate as low skilled. So, we are making posters proving that we are not low skilled but multi-skilled workers. We are grateful to have him because he is not only a tutor but also a friend/mentor that can lean on. Thank you Roman for always supporting us!

Information Technology

One of the main goals of VODW is to equip Domestic Workers in Information Technology that is why we are encouraging members to join the classes every Sunday. From being zero in Basic Computer Skills to do their own data and spreadsheets using Google Sheet. Right now it's easy for them to navigate the tools and they understand the basic computer language. They are looking forward to learning more and to making their own Website same as the Advance I.T. students. If everybody has skills and a computer literate our life will be easier.

Financial Coaching

For the whole month topics in Financial Coaching are Patience, Consistency and Commitment. In general, Patience is a Virtue but in Financial you need to have an extraordinary amount of Patience. This is the most important yet most frustrating thing to learn especially when you are investing, spending and also at work. People might think that they will be rich in a matter of weeks if not it turns out to pull out  or resell their investment. In spending money Patience is also important because it controls you to spend more than the limit. Same at work, for us to stay longer at our workplace we need to control ourselves and not use too much of our emotions. The other topic is the Consistency. These techniques must be used for similar situations but most of the time in our goal or plan. We need to be consistent in saving and the goal that we have set. The third topic is Commitment. This also has a major role in Financial. Once you're committed you need to do your obligations and focus on goals. These three topics that we discussed have also major challenges and obstacles but we also studied on how we manage or to survive these challenges.

International News on Domestic Workers

On 28-29 June 2021, EFFAT is co-hosting a 2-day online Conference to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of the ILO Convention C189 on Decent Work for Domestic Workers. The Conference is organised by a European Multi-Stakeholder Alliance between e.g. the ILO, the European Commission, trade unions and employers’ organisations.

28 June 2021

29 June 2021

10.30 am to 5 pm

9 am to 2.45 pm

Interpretation

English, French, Italian, German, Polish, Romanian, Spanish


Registration is open here.

International Domestic Workers Federation (IDWF) campaign for the ratification of ILO C189 decent work for domestic workers and ILOC190 on violence and harassment in the world of work.

Covid-19 Update

On May 17, 2021 almost all of the establishments are open including cinemas, museums, and children's play areas. Up to 6 people or 2 households will be able to meet indoors and up to 30 people outdoors but still there is guidance on meeting family and friends. When you are outdoors, keep wearing a mask and choose open spaces. Even though some shops and entertainments are open there's still Domestic Workers locked up in their workplace. Those workers looking after an elderly still cannot  take their day off. But fear on covid19 Indian Variant remained a threat. We could see many of our members have already taken-up  anew job and we continue to provide financial support to members who haven’t found a job and are still locked-up.
 
Please support and donate to our hardship fund appeal.

Join Us!

Are you a proud domestic worker? Join and campaign with us and be the voice of your own rights. Domestic Work is Decent Work. Domestic Workers are workers.

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