Since 2002, El Centro’s model offers both programs that link day laborers and domestic workers to employment opportunities and engaging campaigns to affect policy that strengthen their rights and address health and safety concerns. Its core programs are designed to enhance job and life skills while building leadership and strengthening relationship with the community.
Membership/Workforce and Development:
El Centro is a membership organization for day laborers and domestic workers. It provides its members a safe place to gather and access work opportunities each day. Members have access to the facility located in Downtown Denver which includes amenities such as a community kitchen and computer lab, locker rental, and tool rental. In turn, members commit to uphold El Centro’s values and carry out its vision, promoting a culture of acceptance and support throughout the community.
Click here to learn more about El Centro’s Membership/Workforce Development.
The employment program is a cornerstone of El Centro, offering direct access to employment opportunities. Hiring workers is as simple as contacting El Centro to request a worker; filling out an intake form; and agreeing to basic terms, including a pay rate of living standard wage. Employers receive information and education regarding their rights and responsibilities when hiring a worker. This program boosts employment for worker members and holds both the workers and their employers accountable for a strong working relationship. Workers who access jobs through El Centro’s Employment program know that they will receive fair wage of at least $10/hour, at a minimum of 4 hours, and be protected from abuses such as wage theft and unsafe working conditions.
Click here to learn more about El Centro’s Employment Program.
Since 2004, more than 350 women have participated in an eight week leadership training designed to offer tools for domestic workers to generate income and advance self-development. The result has been collaboration and skill sharing as well as the creation of sustainable jobs through the support and promotion of worker-owned cooperatives. This year El Centro’s goal is to develop a base of 150 women who are accessing services through El Centro while strengthening their voice to organize for change. Women will participate in intensive trainings for domestic workers including nannies, house cleaners and home care givers. Marketing training and goal setting will increase each participant’s direct access to employment in these fields.
Click here to learn more about El Centro’s Women’s Program
Wage Theft Clinic:
Beyond the walls of El Centro, 1 out of 6 day laborers experience Wage Theft by an employer who simply does not pay or severely underpays the worker after the work is completed. Since its inception, El Centro, has partnered with key stakeholders through various task forces and direct partnerships, including a long-standing collaboration with the University of Denver Law School. Taking a systematic approach to addressing a variety of cases, El Centro has evolved its capacity to maximize its ability to recover lost wages for workers. This multi-faceted approach requires ever-increasing coordination among private attorneys, local, state, and federal enforcement agencies, and community allies.
Click here to learn more about El Centro’s Wage Claim Program.