Photo credit: asean.org

Photo credit: asean.org

 

Decent work indicators, reducing the costs of recruitment, equal access to skills and training opportunities and enabling environment to enjoy full labor rights, including access to justice, are necessary for women migrant workers to benefit from the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC).

The ASEAN Trade Union Council (ATUC) made these proposals in a session during the ASEAN High-Level Policy Dialogue on Women Migrant Workers in the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) on 7 July 2017 in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Ms. Florencia Cabatingan, Chairperson of the TUCP (Philippines) Women’s Committee represented ATUC in the Policy Dialogue.

Ms. Florencia Cabatingan (left), Chairperson of the TUCP (Philippines) Women’s Committee represented ATUC in the Policy Dialogue. (Photo credit: asean.org)

The AEC offers employment opportunities for migrant women workers who contribute significantly to the economies of their origin and destination countries.

Decent work indicators help in monitoring decent work and in addressing decent work deficits for women migrant workers in the region.

High administrative and intermediation costs of official migration channels force women migrant workers away from the protection of regular recruitment channels.

Instituting fair recruitment, including proper guidance on allowable costs and clear definition of recruitment fees and related costs, would help women migrant workers avoid exploitation and abuse.

The challenge of skills development affects both origin and destination countries. Women must have equal access to skills and training opportunities even before migration. Countries of destination benefit from such training and skills of migrant workers and their contribution in this area must be established.

To enjoy full labor rights, promoting freedom of association is necessary to realize other rights, including collective bargaining, and decent work. Women workers in the informal economy and other vulnerable sectors must have access to relevant information, justice and complaints mechanisms for redress of concerns.

The Policy Dialogue discussed the results of the Study on Women Migrant Workers in the ASEAN Economic Community. The Study would guide ASEAN in building an inclusive community for women migrant workers with renewed political will and gender-responsive policies.

Senior officials from labor, gender, trade and foreign affairs of ASEAN Member States participated, as well as representatives from ASEAN Confederation of Employers, ASEAN Trade Union Council, ASEAN Services Employees Trade Union Council, Task Force on ASEAN Migrant Workers and the Philippine Migrants Rights Watch.