Baby & Beyond: One state argues for babysitter's rights - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Baby & Beyond: One state argues for babysitter's rights


Many people's first job is babysitting or nannying.

One state is considering a law that would require lunch breaks, minimum wage, overtime pay and more for sitters.

With four kids of her own, Melinda Bombaro knows the concerns many parents have about childcare, especially when it comes to hiring a nanny.

"Families are obviously entrusting you to take care of their children in their home, so it's a wonderful responsibility to really have a lot of input into these kids' lives," Bombaro said.

But having previously been a nanny herself, she doesn't exactly equate it to a full time job.

"I think childcare naturally has breaks. Children nap, you fix the child lunch, you sit down and eat your own lunch," she said.

But according to lawmakers in some states, that's not enough. And caregivers could soon be compensated.

For instance, California is debating the so-called "Baby Sitting Bill", which would require household employers to pay minimum wage, except minors or family members. Caregivers would also be entitled to rest breaks every two hours and a lunch break.

That means an additional babysitter would need to be hired to relieve the nanny. They would also get overtime pay. And if they didn't get it, they could sue their employer.

"It may discourage families, that would be my visceral reaction," Bombaro said.

Still, it depends who you ask. Jan Huckins is also a mother and former nanny.

"My experience was positive, but I can see how someone could really be abused as a nanny and almost be like a nanny/caretaker, and kind of like the help too," Huckins said.

While the opinions are mixed, former nanny or not, to some it's just not feasible.

"It may be tricky to try and find someone to come in for an hour a day. Who's gonna want to come for an hour?" Bombaro said.

The bill has already passed California's House and is currently in the Senate.

Now word if a similar bill is on its way to Iowa.

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