Regulation governing domestic work inconclusive – Employment Minister

The Labour (Domestic Workers) Regulations 2020 (L.I.2408) was passed to formalize domestic work.

Is allowance instantly strangers applauded

The Minister for Employment and Labour Relations, Ignatius Baffour-Awuah has noted that the Labour (Domestic Workers) Regulations 2020 (L.I.2408) remains inconclusive as Ghana is yet to ratify C189 of the International Labour Organisation’s (ILO)  Domestic Workers Convention. 

Speaking at a virtual advocacy meeting for the ratification of ILO’s Conventions on domestic workers by ECOWAS Member States, Mr. Baffour-Awuah said Ghana must ratify C189 “as soon as practicable” to ensure domestic workers enjoyed basic labour rights as other professionals.

“Without ratification, this notable achievement will remain inconclusive if we deny ourselves the regular reporting associated with ratifications,” he said.

The Labour (Domestic Workers) Regulations 2020 (L.I.2408) was passed to formalize domestic work. The regulation is to protect the rights of domestic workers and set out regulations for the relationship between domestic workers and their employers. 

This includes, inter alia, the obligation to enter into a written contract and define wages, working time, leave, the role of the worker, and training which will be provided by the employer. It also includes a clause providing that "an employer of a domestic worker shall, in accordance with section 116 of the Act, ensure that the domestic worker is not subjected to any form of forced labour".

Much like Ghana's L.I., the Decent Work for Domestic Workers Convention (No. 189, known as C189) extends rights such as paid leave, minimum wages and employment contracts to domestic workers. It was adopted by the ILO in 2011.

According to the ILO, at least 75.6 million people in the world are engaged as domestic workers. Africa is said to be the largest employer of domestic workers (5.2 million) after Asia and Latin America. 

In its 2021 report, the ILO indicated that a decade after the adoption of C189, decent work is yet to become a reality for many domestic workers. 

In the ECOWAS sub-region, only Guinea has ratified C189.