Employers’ perspectives towards domestic workers in Jordan: a qualitative study on attitudes, working conditions and the employment relationship

This working paper presents the findings of a qualitative study of employer attitudes. In order to identify key themes related to the recruitment of migrant domestic workers (MDWs), employers’ behavioural attitudes towards such workers and knowledge of their rights, 20 semi-structured interviews were conducted with employers and senior managers of recruitment agencies. A focus group with senior managers of recruitment agencies was also conducted.

Given the critical relevance of the migrant domestic work sector within the region, and that migrant domestic workers (MDWs) are overwhelmingly exposed to exploitative living and working conditions, MAGNET has decided to conduct a qualitative study in Jordan on this topic.

Transforming employers’ attitudes and behaviour towards MDWs is a key step to securing the latter’s basic rights to decent work. Unfortunately, little research has been done in the Arab world on how employers recruit MDWs, the motivations behind their behavioural attitudes, and their knowledge of domestic workers’ rights.