We contextualize contemporary domestic worker organizing in Vancouver within a history of domestic worker organizing in Canada and then build the argument that their organizing has been structured by the gendered geographies of: international migration; the location of the work in the private home; and the prevalence of stepwise migration of Filipina domestic workers to Canada. These gendered geographies have led to a distinctive mode of organizing: in the community around a wide range of issues that enfold social reproduction into workplace issues to engage the entirety of individuals’ and families’ lives across the life course. Domestic workers’ organizing is grounded in the spatialities and materialities of their lives, and seemingly familiar gender scripts take on an active force in the domestic workers’ mobilization. Confronting the contradictions of organizing domestic workers and organizing to revalue domestic work points to the enduring undervaluation of feminized workers and their work, as well as the potential for intersectional solidarities along with the need for multisectoral strategies.
I thank Migrante BC for their work, companionship, willingness to share their astute theorizing, and close editing of this chapter. Thanks very much to Ruth Milkman for the invitation to attend the Exploratory Seminar on Gender, Precarious Work, and Labor Organizing at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study in February 2016. Thanks to Rina Agarwala and Jennifer Chun for their generous editorial help and to Rosemary Collard, Jess Dempsey, Sara Nelson, Julian Go, and an anonymous referee for their help in refining the argument.
Pratt, G. and BC, M. (2018), "Organizing Filipina Domestic Workers in Vancouver, Canada: Gendered Geographies and Community Mobilization", Gendering Struggles against Informal and Precarious Work (Political Power and Social Theory, Vol. 35), Emerald Publishing Limited, pp. 101-120. https://doi.org/10.1108/S0198-871920180000035007Download as .RIS
Emerald Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2019 Emerald Publishing Limited