International Domestic Workers Day: EFFAT and IDWF give rise to a global movement in protection of Domestic Workers Worldwide

Brussels 16 June 2023: It’s International Domestic Workers Today

Today, EFFAT celebrates the dedication of nearly 10 million of hard-working domestic workers in Europe who operate in private households, not only enabling countless families to improve work-life balance, but also providing essential care for our beloved ones.

Despite being a vital and indispensable workforce throughout Europe and the world, the economic and social contributions of domestic workers have too often been ignored, leaving them longing for recognition. In many member states, they are undervalued and denied basic workers’ rights, including adequate health and safety standards, the opportunity to engage in collective bargaining and, in some cases, access to social security and social protection. Their situation is a stark reminder of the urgent need for change.

Their precarious condition is unfortunately a common feature of the other 16 million domestic workers worldwide. That’s why, alongside its advocacy work, EFFAT has strengthened its ties with the International Domestic Workers Federation (IDWF), consolidating collaboration between the two organizations to ensure continuity, trust, and effectiveness in defending the rights and interests of domestic workers in Europe.

EFFAT, with its extensive expertise, network, and experience holds a pivotal position as a member of the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC), the primary organization representing workers at the European level. Through its work with the ETUC, EFFAT has access to a broad network of trade unions across Europe, enabling effective coordination, information sharing, and joint initiatives on labour-related issues.

As the Regional Secretariat of the International Union of Food, Agricultural, Hotel, Restaurant, Catering, Tobacco, and Allied Workers’ Associations (IUF), EFFAT serves as a vital link between the global trade union movement and European workers in the Food, Agriculture, Tourism and Domestic Work sectors.

Through this partnership, the organizations ensure continuity in their efforts and reinforce their commitment to upholding the rights of domestic workers. By pooling their resources and sharing best practices, the IDWF and EFFAT can enhance their advocacy work, forge stronger relationships with stakeholders, and champion policies that bring about meaningful change.

Alongside EFFAT and IDWF collaboration, EFFAT is committed to supporting its affiliated unions organising domestic workers and the wider domestic workers’ movements in Europe. EFFAT will also continue to carry out its advocacy work at the EU level and push its campaign ‘A House of Dignity for Domestic Workers in Europe’ which include EFFAT demands to improve recognition, value and professionalisation for domestic Workers in the EU.

Learn more about our work:
House of Dignity campaign
Listen to the newly released Episode of the ETUI EFFAT Podcast: a House of Dignity for Domestic Workers in Europe