Domestic Workers Sector Skill Council (DWSSC) held a round table conference 2023 on Nayi Disha – Hunar se Rozgar Tak at Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Mumbai, on February 24th, 2023. The conference focused on a lively debate on strategies to increase the lives of domestic workers and carers across the country, as well as corporate partnerships for innovation and enabling technology to enhance the sector.
The conference was attended by Special Guest, Padma Shree, Shri. Manoj Joshi, Film and Theatre Artist; Guest of Honour, Dr. Vinita Aggarwal, Executive Member, NCVET; Dr. Shalini Bharat, Vice Chancellor, TISS and DWSSC Director; Mr. Harish Nandan Sahay, DWSSC Additional Director; Ms. Mona Gupta, CEO, DWSSC; Ms. Pritha Dutt, DWSSC Chairperson; Mr. K Ganesh, DWSSC Director, Dr. Sanjay Gandhi; Mr. Pradeep Tupe and Mr. Prashant Pund, Vice Presidents, PMA; Prof. Bino Paul, Deputy Director and Pro-Vice Chancellor, TISS.
Shri. Manoj Joshi, Film and Theatre artist said “Domestic Workers & Caregivers have a very strong inherent skill set called “Vyavahar”. It is an income generating sector leading to “Swaraj’ and Samriddhi” and a very important sector creating exceptional opportunities all over the country both in villages and overseas.”
In her keynote address, Guest of Honor Dr Vinita Aggarwal, Executive Member, National Council for Vocational Education and Training (NCVET), emphasized that “The Domestic Workers Sector, directly and indirectly, contributes to increased women’s participation in active labour.” She also highlighted the market’s high demand for skilled domestic workers, both domestic and international. “They are vulnerable due to their lack of training. Hence, skilling is crucial.”
Dr. Shalini Bharat, Vice Chancellor, TISS and DWSSC Director, welcomed the audience in her context-setting speech and shared the journey and gradual evolution of Sir Dorabji Tata Graduate School of Social Work to TISS which today serves with more than 32 vocational courses and programs. It also highlighted the need for digitization and the huge potential of the workforce in International Migration.
Topics discussed during the open house were,
- The use of cutting-edge technology
- The need to raise money through Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives for improved infrastructures and training inputs
- The creation of a Special Invitation Group for new employment and entrepreneurship opportunities by engaging the industry as a skill centre and for fee-based training
Ms. Pritha Dutt, DWSSC Chairperson in her welcome address stated, “Sectors catered by DWSSC are informal and unorganized, which forms a large number in the workforce. Women’s workforce constitutes the majority in this sector ranging from Housekeeping, Caregiving, Laundry Service, Sanitation & Home Management. This is the only sector that provides the right impetus and support to the workforce thus helping the earning livelihoods and reaching the goal of financial security and stability.”
Mr. K Ganesh, DWSSC Director Successful Entrepreneur and Founder-Promoter of Portea Medical, Big Basket, and Home Lane, addressed the audience in his context-setting speech about Industry Perspective highlighting the need of creating micro-entrepreneurs through self-employment. He emphasized, “The focus should be on core local challenges in India in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities and how entrepreneurs can help in tackling these issues and creating value for all stakeholders by sharing examples of IT industries, Business Process Outsourcing (BPOs) and National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM).”
Mr. Harish Nandan Sahay, DWSSC Additional Director urged the audience to come forward to form the Special Interest Group for the benefits and upliftment of Domestic Workers & Caregivers, emphasizing the need for skilling and training to make the job roles aspirational and break the social barriers. He urged the industry to come forward with industry-based skill programs.
Dr. Sanjay Gandhi, Mr. Pradeep Tupe and Mr. Prashant Pund, Vice Presidents, PMA, addressed the Context Setting for Special Interest Group and shared their experience and passion being associated with skill development. Mr. Pradeep shared his experience of working in a skill development ecosystem such as Learn and Earn for enabling tech platforms for our sector.
Prof. Bino Paul, Deputy Director and Pro-Vice Chancellor, TISS gave a presentation on “Domestic Workers & their Skill and Education Status: Findings from Periodic Labor Force Survey 2021” which explored some very important aspects of the predominance of Women to the tune of 89.4% in this sector.
Also read: DWSSC’s 1st Industry Stakeholder Meet on Bridging Skill Gap and Up-Skilling Domestic Workers https://www.nationalskillsnetwork.in/dwsscs-1st-industry-stakeholder-meet-on-bridging-skill-gap-and-up-skilling-domestic-workers/
Ms. Mona Gupta, CEO, DWSSC concluded the Round Table Conference with the following Engagement model for SIG identifying partner strengths to plug the gaps for employee sensitization, sharing of data on trained candidates, and leveraging the platform to bring demand and supply together.