Gender and Behaviour

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Domestic Workers and Career Women: The Dilemma of Family Stability

T George


Sociological research on paid domestic work has increased substantially in recent years. Domestic employment has also continued to be common in developing countries and some of today' s most advanced societies are witnessing a resurgence rather than a decline in such employment. Inspite of several policies on child right and widespread prohibition of child slavery by various nations to discourage the perpetuation of the illegal acts, domestic employment still thrives in various societies. While the girl child account for the greater proportion of domestic workers globally, career women are found to be massively involved in the employment of domestic workers in order to sustain their own participation in paid employment. It is expedient to state that the issue of domestic work is a modern phenomenon. In a traditional family setting, the woman ran the home in terms of domestic chores and child care but in contemporary times due to job mobility and the changing economy as ushered in by industrialization, the woman has also become a partaker in breadwinning thereby necessitating the need for the employment of domestic worker.( It will not be out of place to state that ‘the domestic worker is a necessary evil' because of the various activities they engage in.) This paper sets out therefore to answer the following questions: who benefits in the long run? What is the future of the domestic worker in the home? Are career women not guilty of excess delegation of their duties? What danger does this pose for the offspring in the home and the larger society? And what is the way out of this dilemma.

Gender and Behaviour Vol. 5 (2) 2007: pp. 1229-1239

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