Domestic Workers' Bill of Rights Passes in California

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The California State Legislature has approved AB-241, better known as the Domestic Workers “Bill of Rights.”

The bill would guarantee overtime pay for domestic workers who work more than nine hours per day or 45 hours per week. 

“Growing up, I saw first-hand how hard domestic workers labor without basic worker protections that most of take for granted,” said Senator Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) in a press release. “My mother worked her fingers to the bone cleaning other people’s homes. I’m proud to be a coauthor for this long-overdue measure which will end the historic exclusion of this industry from overtime pay.” 

The Senate approved the bill with amendments 22-12 on Wednesday morning, and the Assembly approved the changes on Thursday. While AB-241 initially included workers rights such as meal breaks and sick days, it was amended to focus only on overtime pay. 

The bill will now head to the desk of Governor Brown. However, both Brown former Governor Schwarzenegger have killed similar bills in the past. 

The governor vetoed a domestic workers bill in 2012, arguing that it would place an extra burden on employers, particularly with low-income, elderly, or disabled individuals who need constant care.

Governor Brown has until October 13 to sign AB-241.

What do you think? Is a domestic workers “Bill of Rights” necessary? Share in the comments. 

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About this author

Cristina Arreola, Associate Editor

Cristina Mari Arreola is the Associate Editor. Originally from El Paso, Texas, she earned her degree at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University before moving to New York City. In her downtime, you can usually find her scouring the city for the most authentic Mexican food (still looking), scaring herself silly watching horror movies, or frantically reading a novel from her (extremely lengthy) reading list. See what she's reading now on Goodreads, and follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

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