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Dust and DignityDomestic Employment in Contemporary Ecuador$
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Erynn Masi de Casanova

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781501739453

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501739453.001.0001

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(p.131) Epilogue
Dust and Dignity

Erynn Masi de Casanova

Cornell University Press

This epilogue looks at several new factors affecting domestic employment in Ecuador today which may change the landscape for workers, employers, and activists. First is the new government. If before, there was worker-friendly rhetoric and praise for humble domestic workers, but little concrete improvement in policies and conditions, today even the rhetoric is gone. The best way to reach and make claims on the new government is still unclear, and it will be difficult to obtain state funding for domestic worker initiatives. Second, there has been a “rupture” in the domestic worker organization Asociación de Trabajadoras Remuneradas del Hogar (ATRH). This situation makes organizing and advocating for domestic workers more difficult and may lead to confusion among policy makers and funders. Third, there has been an uptick in migration to Ecuador from Colombia and Venezuela, as people flee violence, political instability, and economic disaster. Finally, some of the people interviewed in 2018 claim to be witnessing growth in the proportion of live-in, full-time domestic workers. Despite changes in the context of domestic employment, however, workers' status has not changed much since this study began. Social reproduction is still devalued, informal arrangements still prevail, and the class gulf between employers and domestic workers remains.

Keywords:   domestic employment, Ecuador, domestic workers, domestic worker initiatives, domestic worker organization, migration, social reproduction, informal work arrangements, class relations

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