The Commissioner for Immigration, Interculturality and Diversity, Lola López, presented the novelties on the labor rights of working people in the home and of care, accompanied by Norma Veliz, of Mujeres Pa'lante, and Carles Bertran, from CCOO-CITE (Information Center for Foreign Workers), both representatives of the Municipal Immigration Council of Barcelona (CMIB), and Bessy Ponce, of the Migrantes y Diversas Mujeres women and home workers.
The lack of protection in health in the workplace, the difficulty of access to contributions for pensions and contributory benefits, the violation of the right to a motivated dismissal and the bad social coverage in the non-payment of salaries and the difficulty of the unions to the time to act, among many other elements, make it absolutely necessary to put on the table the revision of a regulation that keeps more than 700,000 people in a situation of social inequality, both in the formal and informal economy. It is also a highly feminized sector, more than 90% are women, and over which the immigration law has a high incidence, since between 50 and 60% are of foreign origin.
The City Council of Barcelona claims in Spain the effective and immediate ratification of Convention 189 of the International Labor Organization (ILO) in order to give minimum guarantees of protection to people who are working under the special system of domestic workers, since It would lay the foundations to establish decent working conditions comparable to the rest of the working people.
68 proposals for the dignification of domestic workers
Within the framework of the Municipal Immigration Council of Barcelona, a working group was created with the main objective of preparing a document that includes 68 proposals to dignify the sector, claiming work and social improvements and in order to raise awareness in society. The proposals are directed to the different administrations according to their competences. In the case of those of municipal competence, the Barcelona City Council undertakes to seek the necessary budget to implement them.
These are, among others, to carry out a study and diagnosis of the situation of the sector and of the working conditions of the domestic and care workers, emphasizing the people who are in the internal regime; encourage the hiring of domestic workers and care with tax deduction policies, offering a copayment from Social Services and financing a part or all of the Social Security registration; promote the creation of a specialized service that offers comprehensive care to people in the household and care sector and that incorporates the possibility of reporting all types of abuses and improving legal advice on immigration issues; guarantee access to the training of people in an irregular situation and promote that Barcelona Activa will facilitate their labor insertion.
On the other hand, in addition to the request for ratification of the agreement in Spain, the main proposals made in the other administrations are:
– Reform the Immigration Law and make more flexible the requirements and procedures for obtaining and renewing residency and work permits.
– To allocate the necessary resources to the Law of the Dependency in order to cover the needs of many families who do not receive support and who must hire domestic workers in very precarious conditions.
– Eliminate the Special System within the Social Security for domestic workers and their immediate incorporation into the General Social Security Regime in order to have equal rights with all working people.
– To suppress the termination of the contract by free withdrawal, which is equivalent to a free dismissal, by the contracting party.
– Include the claim to the Wage Guarantee Fund (FOGASA) of the wages that were not received due to the employer’s default.
– Make maternity coverage operational under the same conditions as the General Scheme.
– Receive benefits for temporary incapacity for work.
– Equalization of the right of coverage to Social Security, especially the right to unemployment benefits, nonexistent for this col • lective.
– Improve access to retirement.
– Request to include dependent children out of the state, especially minors or with a disability, to the deductions in the income statement.
– Obligation that all contracts be in writing to guarantee labor rights and especially to avoid the irregularity that has occurred.
– Establish salary tables that guarantee decent salaries, based on the Minimum Interprofessional Salary.
– Explore the feasibility and impact of other hiring alternatives such as studying the viability of service checks, the self-employed regime, business formation …
– Adopt measures of prevention, denunciation and sanction of sexist violence in the work of the home, with emphasis on sexual abuse.
– Enforce the regulations regarding the regulation of internal people, providing they offer presence and overnight 24 hours a day.
– Request the generality of Catalonia, in col • collaboration with Barcelona Activa, to open the process of professional accreditation of domestic workers.
– Implement training courses and prevention of the use of toxic cleaning products
Barcelona City Council has made a commitment to put care at the center of municipal policies. Last May the Government Measure ‘For the Democratization of Care’ was presented, a strategic plan foreseen until 2020 that works to dignify the work of care and home.
In this line, also, next Friday, December 22, will be taken to the Plenary Council an Institutional Declaration to seek municipal commitment to encourage the hiring of domestic workers.