August 31, 2010
Governor Paterson Signs Domestic Workers Bill of Rights
Governor David A. Paterson today signed into law a landmark bill to grant workplace protections to domestic workers, the first such law to be enacted in the nation. Domestic workers had been excluded from many of the rights granted to other employees by legislation enacted in the past.
Among other provisions, this bill provides for:
- The right to overtime pay at time and a half after 40 hours of work in a week, or 44 hours for in-home workers;
- A day of rest every seven days, or overtime pay if it is waived;
Three paid days of rest annually after one year of work;
- The removal of the domestic workers exemption from the Human Rights Law, and the creation of a special cause of action for domestic workers who suffer sexual or racial harassment;
- The extension of statutory disability benefits to domestic workers, to the same degree as other workers; and
- A study by the Commissioner of Labor on the practicality of extending collective bargaining rights to domestic workers.
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