South Africa: Myrtle Witbooi, President of IDWF on the Importance of C189
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Celebrating International Domestic Workers' Day with Myrtle Witbooi, Pioneering Activist for the Movement | WIEGO
Myrtle Witbooi never intended to become a domestic worker. She had planned on studying nursing, but when a family asked her to help caretake for their daughter, who was recently burned, she agreed. For the next 12 years, she lovingly looked after the growing child and her siblings and, unwittingly, became a full-time domestic worker. However, it wasn't until a local newspaper published an article disparaging domestic workers that Myrtle became an activist.
Witbooi is part of a pioneering group that founded the International Domestic Workers’ Federation (IDWF), the first global union organization run by women. She says, "Where women take the lead, things happen." Although still in its early years--IDWF was founded in 2013--the women have made great strides at both the local and, importantly, international level.
Watch Witbooi discuss the importance of C189 and how the Convention can have an impact on the lives of domestic workers.
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