Domestic worker public education plan launched


HONOLULU — The state Department of Labor & Industrial Relations and Gov. Neil Abercrombie recently announced the launch of a multilingual public education campaign concern domestic workers. Signed by the governor last year, Act 248 provides for minimum wage, overtime, discrimination and harassment protections for domestic workers. Previously, domestic workers were excluded from these basic protections of state wage and hour and fair employment laws afforded to others.

“Workers protected under this law include housekeepers, childcare workers, caretakers, maids, and gardeners among others that work in the home of employers,” Mila Kaahanui, executive director of the Office of Community Services. “These workers are often hidden from vie and many may have limited English proficiency.”

The Domestic Workers Hawaii Rights campaign has created informational material in 10 languages in addition to English. The campaign will reach into the community through the Office of Community Services’ Immigrant Resource Centers on Kauai, Oahu and Hawaii Island. Educational material will also be posted on TheBus, available on the Department of Labor & Industrial Relations website, and disseminated through community organizations. In addition, radio spots will begin running on select radio stations later this month.