The Intimate Knows No Boundaries: Global Circuits of Domestic Worker Organizing.

Boris, Eileen, and Megan Undén.

In Gender, Migration, and the Work of Care, pp. 245-268. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham, 2017.


This chapter interrogates the interaction between the local and the global by focusing on efforts to pass a Domestic Worker’s Bill of Rights at the state level in relation to ILO Convention 189. These legal instruments developed at the same time and involved policy feedback and policy transference despite varying political economies. Boris and Undén consider what roles the National Domestic Workers Alliance and US delegates played in the making of the ILO convention and then highlight how domestic workers in the US have deployed that convention in state-level campaigns. They analyze these local laws next to the ILO convention and its accompanying recommendation, noting the differences between the international (ILO), nation-states (country) and state (subnational) legislatures as interactive spheres of political power in shaping law, policy and enforcement. The ILO convention serves as an organizing and mobilizing device on the ground even though the US has not ratified it. The transnational emerges then as a space for struggle, showing that people are transnational, even if law and enforcement are not. Thus, Boris and Undén address migration and concepts of citizenship as part of their evaluation of the interplay between the international and the national.

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