Why is it in the news?
- A draft National Policy on domestic workers is under consideration of the Central Government. The policy, if finalised, will benefit 50 lakh domestic workers in the country including maids and drivers amongst others.
- Salient features of the policy
- Inclusion of Domestic Workers in the existing legislations
- Domestic workers will have the right to register as workers. Such registration will facilitate their access to rights & benefits accruing to them as workers.
- Right to form their own associations, trade unions
- Right to have minimum wages, access to social security, protection from abuse, harassment, violence
- Right to enhance their professional skills
- Protection of Domestic Workers from abuse and exploitation
- Domestic Workers to have access to courts, tribunals, etc.
- Establishment of a mechanism for regulation of concerned placement agencies
Measures already being taken
- The Central Government has enacted the Unorganized Workers’ Social Security Act, 2008 for providing social security to all unorganized workers including domestic workers. The Act provides formulation of social security schemes viz. life and disability cover, health and maternity benefits & old age protection by the central Government. The states Governments are mandated under the Unorganized Workers’ Social Security Act, 2008 to formulate suitable welfare schemes.
- Social security schemes like National Old Age Pension Scheme (Ministry of Rural Development); National Family Benefit Scheme (Ministry of Rural Development); Janani Suraksha Yojana (Ministry of Health and Family Welfare), Ayushman Bharat (Ministry of Health and Family Welfare).
- Aam Aadmi Bima Yojana (AABY) with Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY) and Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY) provide life and disability coverage to the unorganised workers for the age group of 18 to 50 years depending upon their eligibility.
- Domestic Workers Sector Skills Council has been established under the Ministry of Skills Development to enable professionalization of domestic workers and enable their career progression.