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Home Sweet Home? Not for Domestic Workers. Ai-jen Poo Demands Justice

On the front lines fighting for the dignity of an invisible workforce, Ai-jen Poo aims to rehumanize society.

Photo by Bekah Mandell

Ai-jen Poo is an organizer. Not the kind that disposes of your clutter or rearranges closets: a community organizer, bringing people with common interests together so they can work as a group to improve their lives. She organizes domestic workers, the mostly female workforce that cares for our families and our homes.“There are few greater gifts than being cared for by another person,” she writes in Organizing with Love, about her successful campaign to pass the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights in the state of New York. “Care roots us in the interconnectedness of humanity. When we face the uncertainty of life, we have each other to rely on. But our society does not respect, protect, or value the work of caring.”There are approximately 3 million people employed as caregivers in the US. The rapidly expanding organization Ai-jen co-founded in 2007, the National Domestic Workers Alliance, so far represents more than 12,000. Recently Ai-jen also launched a nationwide campaign called Caring Across Generations, with the aim of bringing dignity to both aging and caregiving.Ai-jen’s work has been honored by the Fo …

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