California Domestic Workers Coalition


Trafficking is a common reality: in 2016 domestic work represented the largest sector of all labor trafficking cases reported to the National Human Trafficking Resource Center.

Often domestic workers who are trafficked are trapped, their passports confiscated, their jobs contracts are violated, they are forced to work long hours for little pay, their movements restricted and monitored, they are threatened with arrest and deportation if they try to escape, and treated without dignity or respect.

The findings in this report have been quantified from data collected from six NDWA member affiliates who anchor the Beyond Survival campaign and work closely with domestic worker survivors of human trafficking. The data from these organizations reveal the depth and nature of trafficking in the domestic work sector and shed light on the specific forms of exploitation often faced by trafficked domestic workers…

Our findings, detailed within this report, establish that:

Domestic workers experience labor conditions that are often indicators of the most extreme form of labor exploitation human trafficking that resources are needed to meaningfully address the needs of survivors and support their leadership development and that federal policy changes are needed to effectively hold traffickers accountable and prevent the human trafficking of domestic workers.

Addressing human trafficking requires a comprehensive approach that includes better enforcement of existing labor protections, accountability for traffickers, culturally and linguistically appropriate services for survivors and investment in community-based organizations that organize survivors and meet their long-term needs.

New immigration enforcement and policing strategies announced within the first few weeks of the Trump Administration present urgent challenges for those responding to the needs of trafficking survivors, as these policies will only increase the vulnerabilities of low-wage immigrant workers. Now more than ever, the leadership of survivors and directly impacted workers in the struggle to end human trafficking and strengthen our democracy is needed.