Women all over the world recognized themselves in one way or another while watching Alfonso Cuarón’s Roma. Whether you saw yourself in Cleo, the domestic worker, or Sofía, the distressed and abandoned wife and mother, the reality is women often endure an abundance of pain. But it’s Cleo’s endurance and spirit that made Roma such a beloved film, which is why on Oscar night the National Domestic Workers Alliance wanted to celebrate women as inspirational as Cleo. Last night in Los Angeles, domestic workers were treated to makeovers and glamours gowns to celebrate Roma, the Oscars, and themselves.
“There are 2 million women who do this work and are not protected by our labor laws,” Ai-jen Poo, executive director at the alliance, said to the Associated Press. “They are taking care of our families, but they can’t take care of their own families doing this work. We think this is a huge opportunity to expand our support for making these jobs dignified jobs and for valuing the workers.”
One of those lucky enough to be at this event was Doris Tapia, an immigrant from Peru.
“It is a privilege to be part of this event. I could have never imagined I would be stepping in a place like this,” Tapia said according to the AP. “And yesterday trying our dresses on! It was such a lovely experience of camaraderie.”
The event was a labor of love, not just by the alliance but also other supporters that included Roma director Alfonso Cuarón, activist Tarana Burke, actress Diane Guerrero, Eva Longoria and Olga Segura. The AP also reports that Rent The Runway donated the dresses.
“When I saw the film Roma, I saw myself, and I said, ‘This is what I do, this is my life.'” Jacqui Orie, NDWA organizer, and nanny said via Twitter.
“ROMA is creating so much visibility for domestic workers, and in turn, a new group of supporters committed to fighting for domestic workers’ rights. Proud to be partnering with @alfonsocuaron and @participant: http://roma.domesticworkers.org,” the Domestic Workers tweeted.
“The fight to elevate @domesticworkers with much-needed respect, dignity & protection is reaching new heights with a new #DomesticWorkersBillOfRights. ? And, countless screenings of the film are bringing attention to this workforce. Lend your support at http://roma.domesticworkers.org.
By the looks of the event, the women had a fabulous time. They looked beautiful and stylish, but to us, that is who they are every day.