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DayWithoutAWoman: For Domestic and Low-Wage Workers, the Stakes Are Higher Than Ever


DayWithoutAWoman: For Domestic and Low-Wage Workers, the Stakes Are Higher Than Ever

Ai-jen Poo

I sometimes ask domestic workers to imagine what would happen if every nanny, housecleaner and home care worker in the country decided to go on strike for one day. I ask them to reflect on all the children, seniors, and families who would be touched, and then to think about how those families’ workplaces would be affected—the business people, lawyers, and doctors, all the people who couldn’t work because no one was there to support their needs.


Our civilised world is carried on the backs of our cleaners. Without them, literally, we would live in shit.

The surgeon's brilliance was all in vain,
Streptococcus has struck again.

Now tell me; who is the most important person in a hospital?


A woman's work is never done

Being devalued


The issues here can't legitimately be addressed without discussing US poverty. We deny the reality that not everyone can work, and that jobs aren't available to all. The US shut down/shipped out a huge number of jobs since the 1980s, ended actual welfare aid in the 1990s. The last I heard, there are seven jobs for every ten jobless people who still have the means to pursue one (home address, phone, etc.), and we remain determined to ignore the consequences.

The US maintains its downhill slide, slowly transitioning into just another third world labor state. We went from being rated at #1 in overall quality of life when Reagan was first elected (far from perfect, but much better) down to #48 by the time Obama was elected. We created an abundant surplus of job-ready people who are desperate for any job at any wage -- grateful for the chance to replace you for less than you are paid.


You inspire me.
In solidarity.


When immigrants working went on strike for a day, many were fired. This will occur with many of these women who work domestics, fast food, day labor, etc.


Did you read the article? Many are going to work, but wearing red to be visible. We each choose what we can risk, and some of us support those who can't risk instead of naysaying.


Thank you. Note, first published by Glamour. That in itself is highly significant.

I'm watching MSNBC, where even the White House reporter is wearing a red coat. But the new head of the Small Business Administration? A woman invited to speak about women as small-businesspeople? She stupidly wore blue. A symbol of cluelessness and missed opportunity.


Or possibly animosity?


I try when I can to be charitable.