Maid and Janitor Careers
Maids perform typical domestic chores such as cooking, ironing, washing, cleaning
the house, grocery shopping, walking the family dog, and taking care of children.
In some countries, maids take on the role of a nurse in taking care of the elderly
and people with disabilities. Maids are often expected to work at least fifteen
hours per day. Many maids are required by their employers to wear a uniform.
Today the maid may be the only domestic worker that upper and even middle-income
households can afford. In the Western world, comparatively few households can
afford live-in domestic help, usually compromising on periodic cleaners. In less
developed nations, fewer educated women and limited opportunities for working
women ensures a labour source for domestic work.
Young girls working as scullery maids fell to the bottom of the servant
hierarchy which meant they were mocked and ridiculed by upper servants and
completely ignored by members of the household despite the fact that they slaved
away each day at their work. The scullery maid reported (through the kitchen
maid) to the cook or chef.
A between maid (also called hall girl, particularly in the United States) is
a female junior servant in a large household with many staff. The position is
largely defunct in the 21st century, as few households can afford great retinues
of servants with the elaborate hierarchy of the past.
The term hall girl came from her chief duty, which was waitressing in the
Servants' Hall. She was required to set the table and remove the dishes, as well
as waiting at table. She may also have carried meals up to the head housekeeper,
if, for example, that head of staff had breakfast or afternoon tea in her room(s).
The term between maid came from the fact that her duties came under the area
of responsibilites of the housekeeper, butler and cook; if these individuals did
not like one another the job of the between maid was a very difficult one.
In developed countries most families can no longer afford live-in help. In
nations where there is still a ready supply of inexpensive labour the middle
classes may still be able to afford servants. For these households, the remnant
of the once grand position of head housekeeper is often a cook-housekeeper. The
modern cook-housekeeper performs cooking and cleaning duties.
A maid service, also known as a residential cleaning service or home cleaning
service is a business which provides cleaning services as a convenience to
homeowners who do not have (or do not wish to spend) the time to clean their own
homes. Maid services have become more common over the last 20 years or so,
partly because of the rise in two-income families.
Although a maid service may be more expensive than simply hiring a part-time
maid, it offers a number of advantages. First, a service will provide not only
someone to do the cleaning, but also all of the necessary supplies. Second, in
the United States, if you hire a maid directly, you are responsible for
withholding social security taxes. Third, a maid service is, or should be,
insured, and can be held accountable if something is stolen, whereas a private
individual may be difficult to track down.