Coordinating Minister pushes for Household Worker Protection Law

Household Worker Protection Draft Law Development Coordination Meeting, Friday (09/04/2021)

IO – Coordinating Minister of Human Development and Cultural Affairs is urging legislators to complete the pending Household Worker Protection Draft Law. The Ministry’s Deputy of Coordination for the Improvement of the Quality of Women, Children, and Youth Femmy Eka Kartika Putri declares that it is essential to promptly discuss and complete this Draft Law. “Household workers are the closest people to family in our neighborhood. Therefore, discussing the Household Worker Protection Draft Law is a crucial effort,” she said, as she opened the Household Worker Protection Draft Law Development Coordination Meeting on Friday (09/04/2021).

Eka went on to declare that the biggest issues faced by household workers is their vulnerability to exploitation and violence, “… which is caused by the fact that their workplace is a private area and they do not have social protection. Therefore, it is very easy to get them to work beyond decent work standards, whether in terms of excessively long work hours, low wages, multi-layered workloads, and zero work safety and security standards,” she said.

Eka went on to say that protection for household workers as informal workers is very important. According to the 2019 National Workforce Survey, more Indonesian citizens work in the informal sector than in the formal sector (55.72%). “The issuance of the Household

Worker Protection Law will benefit a lot of household workers. This is not just in terms of job security, but also in terms of social security and welfare of these workers,” she said.

During the same event, Assistant Deputy of the Ministry of Women’s Empowerment and Child Protection for the Satisfaction of the Rights of Female Workers and (the Prevention) of Human Trafficking Rafail Walangitan expressed his sincere appreciation towards the Coordinating Ministry of Human Development and Cultural Affairs for having coordinated and initiated the creation of this Draft Law.

Rafail went on to explain that protection of household workers should be regulated by Law, as the Constitution of our country mandates that all citizens have the right to work toward a decent livelihood – one that matches their basic essence and dignity of human beings. Furthermore, the Convention for the Elimination of Discrimination towards Women (“CEDAW”) obliges countries and governments to protect female citizens from discriminatory practices. This is extremely important, as the majority of household workers are women. “The fact that household workers are not recorded as part of the formal workforce means that they are frequently considered as ‘unemployed’, meaning their needs are not accommodated by employment laws,” he said. (eka)