There are 1.4 million Filipinos are working as kasambahays, with over a million of them on live out arrangement, according to a DOLE and PSA survey conducted in October 2019. Highlights of the survey results, to be released by the National Wages and Productivity Commission to the public through a series of data dissemination fora on 27 November, showed some gains but also confirm that policy and program challenges continue to plague the implementation of Batas Kasambahay seven years after its enactment:
- About 4% or 4,500 are child domestic workers, of whom 0.4% are below 15 years old
- Only 2.5% (or about 35,000) have written employment contracts
- 83% of the 1.4 million are not covered by any social security benefit
- Some live-in domestic workers (36%) work 7 days a week, without the benefit of a rest day.
- Average monthly salary of domestic workers is P4,141, ranging from P2,681 in BARMM to P5,958 in NCR
- Only 41% of domestic workers are aware of Batas Kasambahay
In a meeting early this month, concerned DOLE offices studied the results and committed to look into alternative frameworks for more effective enforcement and implementation of the law given the existing policy on privacy of homes; strategies to encourage more domestic workers to organize; clearer methodology for setting the sector’s minimum wage, and; aggressive advocacy initiatives to raise domestic workers’ awareness of Batas Kasambahay.
DOLE Secretary Silvestre H. Belo III has instructed convening the Kasambahay or Domestic Work Inter-Agency Committee to study the survey results and identify measures to address gaps in the implementation of Batas Kasambahay and related rules and guidelines as indicated in said results.
DOLE will also lobby with other government agencies to continuously update relevant data on domestic workers as basis for policy and program development, strengthen compliance in terms of domestic workers’ registration at the local level and improve their social security coverage particularly for those with multiple employers.
All these initiatives aim to further promote and protect the sector’s welfare through more concrete policy pronouncements and significant interventions, pursuant to ILO Convention 189 or the Domestic Workers Convention which the Philippines ratified on 12 September 2012.