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Following Oscar nods, ‘Roma’ screenings will be held for domestic workers and their employers

This image released by Netflix shows Yalitza Aparicio, center, in a scene from the film “Roma,” by f
Yalitza Aparicio, center, as Cleo in a scene from the film “Roma.”
(Carlos Somonte / Netflix/Associated Press)

Cleo, the indigenous worker whose harrowing personal story unfolds in Alfonso Cuarón’s acclaimed “Roma,” is getting more screen time outside of Netflix.

Following the announcement of the film’s 10 Oscar nominations by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences on Tuesday, the National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA) and Participant Media unveiled plans to host community screenings of “Roma” for domestic workers and employers across the nation. Organizers noted that the screenings will not be open to the general public.

The screenings will be held next month in 12 cities, including Atlanta, Chicago, Seattle and New York, as part of a larger campaign to encourage viewers take action. After previously holding two screenings in Los Angeles and announcing plans early Tuesday for another one, organizers later said that a third L.A. screening had not yet been confirmed.

FULL COVERAGE: 2019 Oscar nominations »

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“Domestic workers are the unsung heroines of our families and of our economy. Despite caring for what matters most in our lives — our loved ones and our homes — their work is too often undervalued and invisible. It’s time we recognize and protect this workforce,” said Ai-jen Poo, director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, in a statement Tuesday.

“‘Roma’ reminds us just how important and urgent it is to improve the lives and working conditions of domestic workers,” she added.

The NDWA estimates that there are more than 2 million domestic workers across the country, many of whom work as nannies, house cleaners and caregivers and are women of color and immigrants who face systematically low wages, poor working conditions and do not benefit from labor protections.

But “Roma’s” arrival and accompanying laurels have been celebrated by the growing domestic workers’ movement, the NDWA said, as several states have passed laws to expand rights for those individuals.

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In November, Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), who on Monday announced a presidential bid, Washington state Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal and Poo announced plans to introduce the first national Domestic Workers Bill of Rights.

Twitter: @NardineSaad


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