At the discussion forum entitled “Empowerment of women workers in assistant jobs”, the findings of a rapid assessment of the “Position and challenges of women workers in cleaning and care services in Serbia” were presented by Jovana Čvorić, a researcher with the SeConS Development Initiative Group. The forum was organized by ASTRA – Anti-Trafficking Action organization and the Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung Southeast Europe Foundation.

With financial support from the Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung Southeast Europe Foundation, SeConS developed a rapid assessment in cooperation with and for the needs of the ASTRA organization. The study examines the phenomenon of household work and investigates the working conditions, social challenges, and experiences of women in Serbia and abroad who provide cleaning and care services in households.

The research was conducted in December 2023 and was based on a rapid assessment as an appropriate methodological approach to survey a restricted sample of service providers, covering individual women workers and agencies involved in providing these services. The data were gathered through comprehensive interviews conducted with ten interlocutors in Serbia, aged 50 years and older.

During the second part of the forum, attendees shared their experiences and examples of good practice from Croatia, Slovenia, and Belgium. The participant organizations included the Workers Initiative and Democratization Base (BRID) from Croatia, the Center for Social Research (CEDRA) from Slovenia, and Fairwork from Belgium.

The concluding part entailed a facilitated discussion concerning challenges, working conditions, possibilities for enhancing the legal framework, examples of good practice, and ideas for fostering collaboration among women workers at both regional and national levels.