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Mayor Durkan on Passage of Domestic Workers Bill of Rights: Seattle Leading the Way to Protect Our Most Vulnerable Workers

Seattle (July 23) –  After committing to pass a Domestic Workers Bill of Rights in her first year, Seattle Mayor Jenny A. Durkan celebrated the Seattle City Council’s passage of this legislation that will help protect Seattle’s domestic workers. The legislation, authored by Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda, would help ensure domestic workers receive proper rest and meal breaks, minimum wage, and are able to retain their personal, original documents. The proposed changes would apply to domestic workers regardless of classification. Protections for domestic workers will be implemented and enforced by the City’s Office of Labor Standards.  

“Domestic workers – who are usually women and who are disproportionately immigrants and people of color – have been marginalized and left out of worker protections for decades. Tens of thousands of men and women who work tirelessly in Seattle deserve these basic rights and standards,” said Mayor Durkan. “Building economic opportunity means protecting all workers through fair wages and fair rights. Since taking office, we’ve been working with workers and advocates because these protections are critical for our most vulnerable workers and their families. Thank you to the domestic workers, unions, worker advocates and organizations, and Councilmember Mosqueda for their leadership on protecting our workers through this proposal.”  

Once enacted, Seattle will be the first city in the United States to have a Domestic Worker Bill of Rights.  

According to the Seattle Domestic Workers Alliance, there are approximately 33,000 domestic workers in Seattle, including nannies, house cleaners and home care workers. 

In her State of the City speech, Mayor Durkan committed to passing domestic workers legislation in her first year.