National Domestic Workers Alliance Launches We Dream in Black Chapter in NYC

Media Contact: Marzena Zukowska
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Building Organizing Capacity of Black Domestic Workers to Lead

(New York, New York) -- Last week, the National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA) officially launched a We Dream in Black Chapter in New York City as part of a new initiative to build the organizing capacity of Black U.S. born and immigrant domestic workers.

“We Dream in Black is making sure that black women workers are leading a movement for a new democracy and a new economy for those who need it the most,” said Alicia Garza, Special Projects Director at NDWA.

Black domestic workers have a long legacy of creating change. From the washerwoman’s strike in 1880’s Atlanta to the organizing efforts of Dorothy Bolden and the original National Domestic Workers’ Union of America in the 1960’s and 1970’s, Black domestic workers have long fought for higher wages, better working conditions, and inclusion in critical labor protections.

“Some of the most important labor laws we have today, such as minimum wage and overtime, have intentionally excluded domestic workers due this country’s long legacy of slavery and institutionalized racism,” said Allison Julien, We Dream in Black Organizer. “After fighting for the country’s first Domestic Workers Bill of Rights in New York, I am proud to be a part of the rich organizing history of Black domestic workers

“We are an important part of this economy,” said Gale Johnson, domestic worker and We Dream in Black member. “We are the foundation that makes everything else grow.”

“When I migrated to the USA in the 1970's, I wish there had been an organization for domestic workers like myself,” said Beverly Alleyne, domestic worker and We Dream in Black member. “After more than 30 years as a domestic worked, I am happy to be a part a larger community"

We Dream in Black will work with current affiliate organizations of NDWA in Miami, Florida, and Boston, Massachusetts, and initiates new organizing projects in regions that have high concentrations of Black domestic workers. We Dream in Black has new chapters in Atlanta, Georgia, Durham, North Carolina, and Seattle, Washington, and plans to launch a chapter in Chicago, Illinois in 2017.

About National Domestic Workers Alliance

The National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA) is the nation’s leading voice for dignity and fairness for the millions of domestic workers in the United States, most of whom are women. Founded in 2007, NDWA works for the respect, recognition, and inclusion in labor protections for domestic workers. It’s won state domestic workers’ bill of rights in five states including New York, California, Hawaii,  Massachusetts, and Oregon. The National Alliance is powered by almost 60 affiliate organizations—plus its first local chapter in Atlanta—of over 15,000 nannies, housekeepers, and caregivers for the elderly in 37 cities and 18 states.