In February 2004, El Centro began to organize domestic workers (house cleaners, childcare providers, home care provider, cooks) and working women in other areas of informal economy to promote community, leadership development, self-sufficiency, and job skills. El Centro provides basic job training for new members that equip them with skills to organize and engage in social ventures as well in local and national campaigns that protects their rights and well being as workers and immigrant women.
In 2012 El Centro began exploring a new strategy to create more job opportunities for Domestic workers by promoting and creating worker-led collectives. Women leaders affiliated with El Centro have created collective initiatives focused on cleaning with non-toxic products (green cleaning), childcare services and catering. El Centro supports these collectives by offering workers education on those job areas, work collective model and basic principles, business basics, marketing skills, as well as a providing technical assistance as the collective members develop business plans, marketing strategies, and start their own businesses.
The work collectives are run by members who have completed a job skill training in the work areas of their choice. They are the leaders of their own businesses, and manage their own budget and earned incomes.
Domestic Worker Alliance
In collaboration with the National Domestic Worker’s Alliance, leaders from El Centro’s Women’s Program are actively striving to promote awareness of current working conditions, abuse, exploitation and challenges of domestic workers in Colorado. Because domestic workers are excluded from American labor laws, El Centro organizes domestic workers in the Denver area and to know their basic human, work, immigrant rights; offer them trainings, leadership development and basic work tools to become self-sufficient and also to engage in collective work.
Hire a Domestic Worker
As a new strategy to create more job opportunities in the under-served community, especially amidst the economic downturn, El Centro has supported and promoted the creation of worker-owned cooperatives and collectives. Women leaders affiliated with El Centro’s Women’s Program have created collective initiatives focused on sewing, craft and jewelry making, cleaning with non-toxic products (green cleaning) and catering. El Centro supports these collectives by offering workers education on cooperative principles, business basics, marketing skills, as well as a providing technical assistance as the coop members develop business plans, marketing strategies, and start their own businesses.