Domestic staff

Fairwork Belgium: Housekeeping staff

In 2011, the International Labour Organisation (ILO) approved the C189 Convention regarding dignified work for housekeeping staff. The convention was ratified by Belgium in 2015 and has been in force since 2016.

The C189 Convention recognises housekeeping staff as fully fledged employees and establishes certain employment rights for such employees, including a minimum wage, access to social security, etc. In this convention, we also find the definition of housekeeping work and staff once more:

  • Housekeeping work: work that is carried out indoors or for one or more families
  • Housekeeper: a person who carries out domestic work in the framework of an employment relationship.

Based on these definitions, we identify three different employment statuses for housekeeping staff in Belgium. The conditions of employment and minimum wages differ from one status to another. If you would like more information about statuses, click on the one you wish to find out more about.

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  • All housekeeping staff have employment rights, even if they have no legal residence. If you do not have a residence permit and work as housekeeping staff, you have the same employment rights as a housekeeper.
  • Au pairs: in legal terms, an au pair is not an employee, however they do still have rights. You can find more information here.