All founding worker-owners of Damayan Cleaning Cooperative are members of Damayan Migrant Workers Association. Damayan is a grassroots community-based organization established in 2002 that serves and organizes low-wage Filipino workers, mostly women domestic workers, to fight for their labor, health, gender and im/migration rights; contribute to the building of the domestic workers movement for fair labor standards and dignity at work; and help build workers’ power and solidarity towards economic and social justice.
In 2014, members of Damayan identified the worker cooperative model as an effective strategy for building worker leadership and just workplaces. In collaboration with the Center for Family Life of Sunset Park, ten women completed a 12-week training in cooperative values, effective group work, cleaning skills and business development.
Damayan Cleaning LLC was officially incorporated in May 2015 and launched in September 2015. The founding members continue to develop their business and engage in leadership development trainings on a weekly basis.
In June 2016, after one and a half years of learning, organizing Filipino low wage workers, and developing our Cooperative together, Damayan Migrant Workers Association is no longer supporting our Cooperative. We are grateful for all our shared efforts, collaborative learning and deep relationships, and are full of hope and respect as our organizations part ways. Through this transition, our Cooperative will be changing our name and re-branding.