Members of the A.P. State Domestic Workers Union urged the government to extend Employees State Insurance (ESI) and maternity benefits for domestic helps in the State.

Thousands of domestic workers attended the meeting organised by the union, in connection with National Domestic Workers’ Day, at Tummalapalli Kalakshetram, in the city on Saturday.

The union leaders said that National Domestic Workers’ Movement was started in the State in 1998.

Due to change in lifestyles, the demand for domestic helps has increased abnormally, and the workers who migrated from rural areas are facing untold hardships in urban areas.

About 90 per cent of the women are working in houses and are suffering with low wages, insecurity, irregular working hours, sexual harassment and other problems. Domestic workers can register their names with the Labour Department in their respective districts, and can get Rs.4,786 salary per month under Minimum Wages Act 1948, they said.

Domestic Workers Movement AP State coordinator Sr. Lissy Joseph demanded that the government provide ESI and maternity benefits to all the domestic helps in the State. She appealed to the government to take measures for strict implementation of the Act.

The union distributed sewing machines and utensils to 90 poor domestic helps on the occasion. Rev. Sister Maris, Rev. Fr. Chinnappa, Dr. G.V. Mohan Prasad, Sister Nirmala and others participated.

More In: Vijayawada