A group of housekeepers and nannies gathered in Liberty City at the Miami Workers Center to talk about their pay in advance of a Domestic Workers Assembly the center will host next month. The assembly will address the field’s low wages and protections for the largely female workforce.
"Domestic workers live in constant risk of being abused by the lack of laws that protect them," said Marcia Olivo, director of the Miami Workers Center. "The fear of mistreatment...if they report to the authorities is due to the lack of labor protections, economic deprivation and immigration status of many of them,"
Carla Hansack makes a living cleaning homes and taking care of children.
Hansack is one of the women helping to organize domestic workers in South Florida. At her previous job as a live-in housekeeper, Hansack said she earned $350 for a 60-hour work week. That's less than $6 an hour, well below Florida's minimum wage of $8.05.
Miami has one of the widest gaps between rich and poor among big cities in the U.S.
"I would like for them to look at domestic workers like any other job," she said. "We deserve respect. We deserve dignity. We deserve a better wage. It’s a real job."