The Domestic Workers Law was the result of a three year campaign by domestic workers and advocacy groups to help improve the working conditions for domestic workers. The law requires employers of certain domestic workers to negotiate and offer a written contract that discloses specific information regarding job conditions and benefits. The law also prohibits retaliation against a domestic worker who requests a written contract, attempts to enforce the terms of a contract, or files a complaint or participates in an investigation of a complaint. Council members George Leventhal and Marc Elrich were the primary sponsors of this bill which was passed unanimously by the Council and signed by County Executive Ike Leggett.
This legislation was intended to level the playing field between domestic workers and their employers, states Eric Friedman, Director, Office of Consumer Protection (OCP). The model employment contract ensures that domestic workers and employers discuss their expectations in critical areas such as wages, job duties, work schedules and employment benefits. By formalizing the relationship, each party should have a clear understanding of their responsibilities.
Montgomery County OCP enforces the law and publishes a model employment contract and a model disclosure statement that employers can use to comply with this law. The contract and disclosure statement are available in English, French, and Spanish.