Domestic Workers Sector Skill Council (DWSSC) is a Section 8 Not for Profit company registered under the Companies Act, 2013 working under the aegis of Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE) and National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC). DWSSC is an apex body complementing the Govt. of India’s efforts for skilling 400 million workforce and is on a mission to create sustainable livelihood for one of the largest growing informal sectors of work and provide them with dignity of labour for their contribution to their own families, households they support and to the GDP.

DWSSC is a key voice for the Domestic Workers sector in terms of policy, identifying critical roles and associated skill gaps. The council works towards capacity building by bridging skill gaps and upgrading skills of the domestic workers including caregivers, gig/platform workers, wage workers and self-employed as per industry standards. DWSSC’s Governing Board is uniquely represented by its Academia, Training Organizations & Industry-Business Leaders.

About the Sector

DWSSC encompasses several critical occupations under the International standards Classification Categories 5, 9 & 13 and the National Industrial Classification which includes Domestic Workers, Cleaners & Helpers in Small Establishments, Home Cooks , Launderers , Child and Elderly Care ( Non Clinical ) ; who are either self-employed or employed either exclusively by one employer or multiple employers in households or establishments as in a gig economy.
It’s one of the largest growing informal sectors of work which had never been addressed before and with an estimation of over 40 million workforces (90% being women). It’s also estimated that approximately 10 million domestic workers migrate to foreign countries. As per some estimates, the 40 million domestic workers are earning approximately 20,000 Cr which is 1% of India’s GDP ( the occupations include cooking, cleaning, taking care of children, elderly and the disabled, launder, attending to the garden or pets, or drive the family car).
A uniquely positioned sector crosscutting between informality, migrant labor and women workforce. As majority of domestic workers hail from economically backward sections of the society, illiterate or marginally educated, school dropouts, unskilled or poorly skilled. This sector is uniquely positioned to provide the easiest transformation of a huge potential workforce to bridge from school to work. It offers a vertical and horizontal progression in terms of career and growth prospects imparting it an aspirational touch and beckoning school pass outs and diploma holders to enter the domains of caregiving.
By 2025, we are expecting a demand of approximately 14.5 million domestic workers in India. Most of the domestic workers are migrants from rural areas of Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Assam, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal & Odisha and our major industry demand comes from Metro cities like Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Pune, Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata and upcoming 2 Tier / 3 Tier cities and towns like Jaipur, Coimbatore , Bhopal, Allahabad, Bhubaneswar etc.

The Sector during the on going COVID-19 pandemic

As India is still battling to bring down the surge of Covid-19 cases, the rate of unemployment has skyrocketed since the beginning of the lockdown and it continues to rise exponentially, especially in the metros. While on one hand, lakhs of Indians in the formal sector have lost their regular paying jobs, on the other hand, the informal sector has been completely crippled, and to be specific, the worst hit in the informal sector is the domestic workers sector; majority being women.

Domestic Workers are struggling to get their jobs back or are rendered completely jobless.. There are a lot of reasons behind this unfortunate picture like virus-spread scare amongst the households because the workers need to move about many different homes as mostly work as part timers, the households themselves running into financial crisis and worst when the employer demises. But, whatever the condition is, the domestic workers are in the middle of the entire coronavirus crisis. 

DWSSC conducted a survey with employers of domestic workers to understand their requirements during and post COVID. As per the survey, 86% of the households are more prone to employing live-in workers, especially in the metropolitan cities and 62.5% prefer trained domestic workers while willing to pay them higher salaries. The survey also shows that 91% of the households look for high hygiene standards in their home caregivers especially for child care and senior care. The biggest revelation was that 81% of the households, whom we surveyed, wanted to motivate and provide time to their existing house helps for classroom training and out of that, 72% was ready to involve their workers in online training on Covid 19. Overall, the survey pointed out that Covid 19 brought a sea of changes in the preferences of households while hiring a domestic worker as they are now more interested in either retaining their current ones or hire only those who display overall high hygiene standards and knowledge.