20 December, 2014 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile





mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 08/05/2010
INDIA
Belgian nun helps two million domestic workers in India regain dignity and rights
by Santosh Digal
In 1985, Sister Jeane Devos founded the National Domestic Workers Movement (NDWM), an organisation that now has 53 branches in 23 states. Domestic workers are often denied their rights, underpaid and treated like animals. A domestic worker in Tamil Nadu recounts how she was not treated as a human being but thanks to the NDWM, her situation improved.

New Delhi (AsiaNews) – In India, the National Domestic Workers Movement (NDWM) has been able to improve the conditions of some two million domestic workers, whose rights have been traditionally denied. Founded in 1985 by Sister Jeane Devos, a Belgian nun with the Order of Missionary Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, the NDWM is affiliated with the Labour Commission of the Bishops’ Conference of India.

“We broke a wall of silence, slavery and exploitation,” Sr Jeane said. “Our movement has grown and we can change the situation of domestic workers through solidarity, dignity, justice and empowerment.”

The NDWM operates 53 branches in 23 Indian states. Its goal is to secure the recognition and protection of domestic workers.

Mgr William D’Souza, archbishop of Patna, said that steps have been taken in the right direction “to create a just society where domestic workers are treated as people with dignity, where their rights are defended, where their contribution to the economy and to development is recognised, where their voice is heard.”

At present, the situation for many domestic workers is truly appalling, something that Seetha Lakshmi, a domestic worker in Dindigul (Tamil Nadu), knows all too well.

“I was getting 50 rupees a month (US$ 1.1) and I was never treated like a human being,” she said. “I cried every day.”

“In 1992, I heard about NDWM and so I turned to them. We talked about wages, hours, and days off. When I spoke to my employer about this movement, my situation improved,” she said.

Over the years, the NDWM has carved a space for itself in Indian society and has found support among political leaders.  

“Women and child domestic workers suffer exploitation and discrimination in various ways and forms,” said the former governor of Maharashtra state, Sanayangba Chubatoshi Jamir. “Together with migrant workers, they form the most vulnerable group of people in society who are often denied their basic rights as human beings,” he added. Therefore, “it is gratifying to note that NDWM has been lending its voice to the cause of women and child domestic workers.”

Thanks to the NDWM, the International Labour Organisation has been developing labour standards for domestic workers.

“Great things have happened to domestic workers,” Sr Jeane said. “We shall continue to move with faith in God and the Spirit that guides the movement.”


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
02/19/2007 CHINA
UN believes China might abolish forced labour
11/24/2009 MYANMAR – INDIA
Useless UN and ILO rituals bring no change, Burmese dissidents says
05/06/2013 TAIWAN
Taipei thanks Sister Hilda, 52 years a symbol of Christian love for the needy
by Xin Yage
06/13/2006 VATICAN
Globalisation should not undermine the right to 'decent work', says the Holy See
10/28/2005 MYANMAR
Myanmar wants to quit ILO

Editor's choices
IRAQ - VATICAN
As 'Adopt a Christian from Mosul' continues, Mosul bishop notes that Jesus is born amid refugee containers
by Amel NonaPersecuted by the Islamic state, refugees have lost everything: belongings, home, jobs, school, and their future. Yet, their faith and mission remain strong. For them, almost 900,000 euros have been raised and sent. Pope Francis sends a message of closeness. The campaign continues according to the Patriarch of Baghdad's proposal of fasting and moderation at Christmas and New Year, with the money saved offered to the Christians of Mosul.
IRAQ
Chaldean Patriarch calls for fasting on Christmas Eve for refugees' return to Mosul
by Joseph MahmoudMar Louis Sako calls on the faithful not to celebrate Christmas and New Year in a "worldly" fashion, with pomp and abundance, out of solidarity with the people who fled the Nineveh plains, persecuted by the Islamic Army. AsiaNews is joining the fast proposed by the Patriarch and calls on all readers to give what they would have otherwise spent in support of the campaign 'Adopt a Christian from Mosul'.
IRAQ - ITALY
Letter from Archbishop of Mosul: Thank you for your aid, supporting the plight of refugees
by Amel NonaThe donations made through the "Adopt a Christian from Mosul" campaign are used to buy food, warm clothes, blankets for refugees and rent houses or caravans given the early onset of winter and. Two women have defended their Christian faith before the Islamist militants who wanted to convert them, despite the threat of death. A refugee among refugees, Msgr. Nona discovers a new way of being a pastor.

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.