Unbossed

A Black Domestic Worker Agenda

We are not Aunt Jemima women.

We are the proud legacies of village-making, dream-holding, voter registering, union building, road-marching, poetry in motion, this land is our land, loud-loving, stunting-on-all-y’all, Black women domestic workers. We believe a better future is possible, one in which Black women and caregivers experience abundant joy, safety and well-being.

Put some respect on our names.

Our Agenda

Abstract "Inclusion" Graphic

Transform the domestic work industry so that we are included in all labor rights, protected from abusive conditions in the workplace, and paid the fair wages that we deserve.

Abstract "Infrastructure" Graphic

Center collective care and social programs that create infrastructure for thriving Black communities.

Abstract "Disrupt" Graphic

Disrupt the systemic and systematic harms that impact the lives of all Black women and domestic workers.

The ‘Unbossed Agenda’ is We Dream in Black’s organizing directive to give power back to the visions of Black domestic workers, who are U.S. born and immigrants, of multiple gender identities and sexualities, and of varied class backgrounds and abilities—some of the most invisible, essential and unprotected workers in our country.

About Us

The National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA) is the leading voice for labor rights, respect, and fairness for the millions of nannies, home care workers, and house cleaners in the United States. In 2015, NDWA launched We Dream in Black (WeDiB) to build the collective power and visibility of Black caregivers, nannies, and professional cleaners. WeDiB works at the intersections of race, gender and class, to push for transformation in the care industry.

Domestic work has deep roots in the enslavement of African peoples and the centuries-long economic exploitation and social subjugation of Black women. Today’s domestic work industry is still defined by poverty wages, rampant sexual harassment, and a lack of regulations and labor protections for the workers. But from enslaved women’s daily forms of resistance, to the coordinated strikes of Southern washerwomen in the late 19th century, to organizing initiatives pioneered by 20th century domestic workers, like Dorothy Bolden and Melnea Cass; Black domestic workers have always led struggles to improve the conditions of the industry and their own lives. We do our work in this powerful legacy.

Interested in our cause? Text UNBOSSED to 97779.
You can also follow the latest news from We Dream in Black on our Facebook page.

My grandmother and her mother and her mother—so many generations back—were just the maids, or the housewomen, or the cooks. We were domestic workers. They were the backbone of people’s homes. They were the keepers of children, they ran the household. Today, we are trying to be recognized that this work is a real profession. We deserve to be respected for what we do. We have diplomas and certificates and degrees, but even if we didn’t, this work is professional. It’s important. If my child care center wasn’t open, other people couldn’t go to their jobs.

Debra, In-home Childcare Provider

Updates

On August 31, we launched our Unbossed Agenda—our vision and organizing directive for building a future that truly values Black domestic workers. 

Watch our launch, jam along to our dance party playlist, read the full agenda & don’t forget to get involved by texting UNBOSSED to 97779.

Launch video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qKSi4RfREO4

Dance Party Playlist:
DJ Chel Xi
https://open.spotify.com/playlist/0l3UkGbw0edo42KKZDhPj1
Sounds by chel Xi
Instagram @chelxatl
soundcloud.com/chelxatl
sound selector, yogi, curator

Sometimes the way we are treated, it takes us back to our ancestors. As much as we have evolved in our society, a lot of racism and pain still happens, it’s just a little more subtle. As a Black domestic worker, I take pride in what I do. I’m so grateful to be in the legacy of Dorothy Bolden, and to organize and fight with other domestic workers. Organizing is the only way things will change and get better.

Glewna, Housekeeper

Policies & Ideas We Support

We support passing the BE HEARD in the Workplace Act, to prevent harassment, abuse, and ensure that all Black women are protected, no matter where we work.

We support passing the Healthy Families Act, which would allow many more Black and low-wage workers to earn paid sick time and take care of their families without losing wages or their job.

We believe that Universal Family Care is a reparative and bold policy idea that provides solutions to the glaring inequalities in our care system, by growing social insurance programs to finance support and compensation for family caregivers.

To move our country forward, we need care at the center of everything—the BREATHE Act recognizes this and calls for investments in our community including paid leave and paid sick time and comprehensive, high-quality child care and elder care.

Get Updates

Feel strongly about our cause and interested in getting involved?


By providing your cell number, you agree to receive occasional texts from NDWA. Data & msg rates may apply. You can opt out at any time – text STOP to 97779 to quit.