Domestic workers and social protection in Dhaka, Bangladesh

This fact sheet provides results from a survey completed in Dhaka in 2019 with 100 domestic workers.


In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government of Bangladesh implemented the Gratuitous Relief (GR) programme to provide humanitarian assistance in the form of food, cash transfers, and baby food. Between March and June 2020, nearly 75 million beneficiaries were reached via the GR. However, many domestic workers remained excluded from this relief.

Policy context

Bangladesh Labour Act 2008 explicitly excludes domestic workers. Since 2015 there has been technical recognition of their status as workers through the Domestic Workers Protection and Welfare Policy (2015), which states that the government shall take the initiative to ensure the access of domestic workers to the Bangladesh Labour Welfare Foundation Fund.

The fund established under the Bangladesh Labour Welfare Foundation Act, 2006, provides financial support to disabled and sick workers, a survivor benefit, a contribution to life insurance and education scholarships for children of eligible workers. However, this policy is without legal backing or implementation and domestic workers in fact have little income security or protection from risks.

Download here



Sign up for IDWF updates and newsletters.