News Detail

MLSS PR Unit December 16, 2021

Jamaica Recognized for Efforts to Formalize Domestic Workers

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Public Relations Unit

1F North Street, Kingston

Tel: (876) 967-5484

Fax: (876) 948-2831

Friday, December 10, 2021


Jamaica Recognized for Efforts to Formalize Domestic Workers



Minister of Labour and Social Security, Hon. Karl Samuda has welcomed news that Jamaica has been recognized for its work to formalize domestic workers. Jamaica has been included as a Good Practice Example in the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative CHRI’s report “Domestic Work is Work: Using ILO Convention 189 to Protect Workers’ Rights across the Commonwealth”.

The report examines the work that has been done to improve the rights and working conditions of domestic workers and bring them into the formal sector in the 10 years since the ILO’s Domestic Workers Convention, C189. Jamaica, which ratified C189 in 2016, is one of only 5 commonwealth countries to have ratified the convention.

Speaking at an online forum to launch the report on Friday, December 10, Minister Samuda said it is fitting that the report is being launched on International Human Rights Day. “I am also proud to know that our progress has been noted in the new report on the Domestic Workers Convention,” said Minister Samuda.

The Labour and Social Security Minister, who acknowledged the integral role played by the Shirley Pryce led Jamaica Household Workers Union in the ratification, said the Ministry continues to work with the JHWU to protect the rights of this critical but vulnerable group.

Minister Samuda noted that the Ministry is in the process of amending legislation such as the Minimum Wage Act to provide additional protections to domestic workers.

“This will ensure that they are regularly paid and that their statutory deductions are paid over so they can access their NIS. The amendments will ensure that they know their leave entitlements and that they have the necessary documentation to support their case in the event of disputes. We are also looking at the Employment Agencies Regulation to put additional measures in place to protect them against human trafficking,” said Minister Samuda.

Minister Samuda said the Ministry is committed to the ILO’s Decent Work Agenda for all workers and continues to work with the organization towards reaching this goal. In the meantime, President of the Jamaica Household Workers’ Union, Shirley Pryce has also welcomed the development.

“We are proud. Jamaica is truly a leader and a model example. We look forward to the continued relationship that we have built with the Ministry of Labour as the work is ongoing,” said Ms. Pryce.


Contact: V George Palmer, Dir. Public Relations & Communications (876) 820-5373 or (876) 967-5484
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