Right to Dignified Labour: A Case for Notifying the National Policy on Domestic Workers in India

Journal of Governance and Public Policy, January-June 2016

21 Pages Posted: 13 Mar 2016 Last revised: 5 Sep 2016

See all articles by Francis Kuriakose

Francis Kuriakose

Erasmus University Rotterdam

Deepa Iyer

University of Cambridge, Students

Date Written: September 4, 2016

Abstract

Domestic work has been an integral part of Indian economy for a long time now both as paid and unpaid care work. With a burgeoning middle class and increasing inequality, this sector has transformed into a readily available livelihood option for many women across India. This field of work is tied to migration to big cities, unqualified labour conditions and often exploitation of various kinds. This paper looks at informalised domestic labour under the purview of forced labour and that of bonded labour. By mapping the stakeholders involved and contextualising the policy landscape, the origins of policy initiation and the immediate challenges to its implementation is analysed. Reading with ILO convention 189 and the National Policy on Domestic Work and other concomitant laws in India, the authors argue for the need to notify the policy on domestic labour and formalise it. Such a policy decision would accrue economic benefits by formalising working conditions, impact legal rights by streamlining job description and improve social condition by monitoring the living conditions of men and women engaged in such work.

Keywords: Domestic Labour, India, Women, Social Security, Labour Rights, Bonded Labour

JEL Classification: J21, J38, K31

Suggested Citation

Kuriakose, Francis and Iyer, Deepa, Right to Dignified Labour: A Case for Notifying the National Policy on Domestic Workers in India (September 4, 2016). Journal of Governance and Public Policy, January-June 2016. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2746726 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2746726

Francis Kuriakose (Contact Author)

Erasmus University Rotterdam ( email )

Burgemeester Oudlaan 50
Rotterdam, 3062
Netherlands

Deepa Iyer

University of Cambridge, Students ( email )

Cambridge
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.cam.ac.uk

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