In the Americas, there are up to 18 million people engaged in domestic work, of which 93% are women, according to the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC).
With a long history of exclusion and job insecurity, domestic workers in Latin America are suffering fully from the economic effects of the Pandemic, which has left them confined and unemployed.
“They told me to excuse them, but that now I couldn’t work. I am a conscious person, I see what is happening to us, but I hope to be able to return to my work soon,” Mexican Carmen Hernández, 59, a domestic employee for more than 15 years, tells us.
Without income, since most are governed by word contracts, the COVID-19 has shown its vulnerability. Seven out of ten are unemployed or lost work hours due to quarantines, according to ECLAC, which calculates its labor informality at 77%. In Brazil, for example, of the 4.9 million jobs that were lost between February and April, 727,000 were in domestic services.
A critical situation for a sector where wages in themselves do not give enough. In Latin America, they are equal to or less than 50% of what other workers earn on average, despite the efforts of some countries to regularize the activity, according to ECLAC.