Most domestic workers in Massachusetts don’t know there’s a law protecting them

The report published Thursday from the Boston College Law School Civil Rights Clinic and the Brazilian Worker Center stopped short of outright criticizing the attorney general’s office

GBH NEWS – By  Sarah Betancourt, January 12, 2023

Boston College Law student Lloyd Hancock presents the researchers findings on the efficacy of the 2015 Massachusetts Domestic Workers Bill of Rights.

A state law providing domestic workers with basic protections from labor abuses is little known and barely used, according to a yearlong study from Brazilian Worker Center and Boston College Law Civil Rights Clinic.

Domestic workers are among the most isolated workers most in the commonwealth: they work in the privacy of people’s homes, and according to the report, over 80% are hired directly by their employer. There’s no human resources division to call, no break room to discuss worker rights by the water cooler. 

The Massachusetts Domestic Workers Bill of 2014 is supposed to provide domestic workers with straightforward labor protections, like a contract in a language that workers understand, payroll records, overtime pay and time off. 

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