Labour migration across state and national boundaries for better economic opportunities is a reality which is of paramount importance to the economic growth of not individuals alone but that of sending and host communities as well. Ensuring safe migration of communities is now one of the Sustainable Development Goals 2030 that has been signed off by the Indian government. However, irregular labour mobility entails specific vulnerabilities of the migrant workforce which leads to exploitation and abuse. In recent times, labour migration across different sectors of work has posed a challenge for government, non-government bodies as well as employers to ensure the safety of those that are aspiring to migrate.
At ASK, we look at labour migration as an opportunity for an individual and a community to uplift their socio-economic status. We believe that it is every individual’s right to migrate safely and work in an environment free of exploitation and abuse. Through an overarching approach of capacity building and multi stake holder engagement, ASK aims to create a facilitative environment that ensures safe labour migration of communities across India, nationally and internationally.
The Migration Domain aims at strengthening access to information and support mechanisms that would safeguard the rights and interests of the migrant workforce across various formal and informal sectors of work. We strive to reduce the vulnerabilities associated with labour mobility and ensure that migrants benefit from their choice to move from the remotest of areas in the country to centres of economic opportunity. Through innovative community focused strategies and context specific interventions, we engage with communities of aspiring migrants and their families at source to ensure their safe migration and link migrants at the destination to available support systems.
The Migration Domain works, in collabouration with civil society organisations, to mainstream the agenda of migration within the institution and their program interventions. We build organisational capacity to engage with the issue of labour migration to ensure safe mobility in their target areas. We engage with NGOs to build regional networks for social dialogue and advocacy on the agenda of safe migration.
The Domain engages with employers, placement agencies and labour suppliers to sensitise them on the specific vulnerabilities of their migrant workforce. Through a participatory capacity building approach, we help agencies adapt their systems of recruitment, hiring and management to deal with the challenges of a migrant workforce and create a safe environment for them to work in. We provide context specific inputs to the private sector to establish a recruitment chain free of risks for migrant workers.
The migrant workforce being our primary stakeholders, ASK works directly at both source and destination to reduce their vulnerabilities.
ASK believes that migration for better economic opportunities is a basic human right. Hence, our efforts are aimed at ensuring safe migration through a multi stakeholder engagement.
We work towards mainstreaming the agenda of migration as a cross cutting issue in development planning among NGO, the private sector and local governance systems.
Through our capacity building approach and ongoing facilitation, we provide strategic guidance to NGOs and private sector in developing systems to address the vulnerabilities of the migrant workforce.
Supported by: International Labour Organisation
The garment industry and the domestic sector of work in India majorly thrive on the migrant workforce. This particular project aims at establishing systems ensuring fair recruitment of migrant workers into garment industry and the domestic sector of work. ASK is currently engaging with private placement agencies and NGOs providing vocational skill training to ensure that fair recruitment practices are followed by them to reduce the vulnerabilities of migrant workers that they recruit. ASK’s strategy is to identify the risks entailed in the recruitment chain of each agency in a participatory manner and develop systems and build capacities of the agencies to mitigate those risks. By facilitating adoption of fair recruitment practices, ASK aims at establishing recruitment chains free of exploitation and abuse.
Supported by: The Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labour, US Department of State
In Partnership with: Verité
ASK is implementing this project along with partner NGOs in Uttar Pradesh and Kerala in India and Qatar and the United Arab Emirates in the Gulf. The focus of the project is on promoting the rights of migrant workers and safe and fair labour migration from South Asia to the Gulf States through a three-pronged strategy of (1) strengthening civil society initiatives and networks, (2) enhancing migrant outreach and awareness, and (3) enabling access to migrant services and remedy through existing and new technologies, web-based and social media tools. ASK is mainstreaming the agenda of migration among NGOs and CBOs in Uttar Pradesh and building their capacities to work on the issue.
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