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Bill making domestic workers eligible for overtime passes Legislature

September 12, 2013|By Melanie Mason
  • Supporters of AB 241, which would make domestic workers eligible for overtime, rally in Los Angeles in March. The bill passed the Legislature on Thursday.
Supporters of AB 241, which would make domestic workers eligible for overtime,… (Gary Friedman / Los Angeles…)

SACRAMENTO -- A measure to make housekeepers, private healthcare aides and other domestic workers eligible for overtime pay cleared the Legislature on Thursday.

The measure, known as the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights, won final approval in the Assembly on a 48-25 vote. It now heads to the Gov. Jerry Brown's desk.

Brown vetoed a similar bill by Assemblyman Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco) last year.

This year's version, also by Ammiano, would make domestic workers eligible for overtime if they work more than nine hours a day or 45 hours a week. Provisions to require meal breaks and rest periods for domestic workers were dropped from the bill.

"Domestic workers provide crucial and backbreaking care for the healthcare and well-being of our children and vulnerable seniors living with disabilities, yet they lack basic labor protections that any worker is afforded under state law and federal law," said Assemblyman Roger Hernandez (D-West Covina).

Opponents said the bill could hurt low-income seniors who depend on in-home healthcare aides.

Assemblyman Allan R. Mansoor (R-Costa Mesa) said the bill, AB 241, "will disrupt the continuity of care with its restriction on working hours and make care more costly."

Ammiano countered that the bill included "wiggle room" to make sure seniors or people with disabilities aren't harmed.

"This isn’t an either/or position," Ammiano said. "It's not to benefit one group or another."


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Twitter: @melmason

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