Home-Based Workers Day, South Asia

Ahmedabad incense roller

20 October, 2013 - The day marks the anniversary of the adoption of the Kathmandu Declaration for the rights of South Asian home-based workers.

About the Kathmandu Declaration

In October 2000, at a South Asian regional conference jointly organized by SEWA, UNIFEM and WIEGO, representatives of home-based worker organizations, government officials, and researchers from five South Asian countries met and formulated the Kathmandu Declaration for the rights of South Asian home-based workers.

The Kathmandu Declaration recommended that all countries in South Asia formulate national policies and plans of action for home-based workers in consultation with organizations of home-based workers. It also recommended that the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) address the issues of home-based workers and take measures to enable them to deal with the risks and opportunities of globalization.

The Kathmandu Declaration invites the attention of governments to the following major areas:

  • the formation of national policy on home-based workers by each country
  • minimum protection, which would include the right to organize, minimum remuneration, occupational health and safety, statutory social protection, maternity, childcare, skill development and literacy programmes
  • access to market and economic resources including raw materials, marketing infrastructure, technology, credit and information  social funds for home-based workers, which would provide insurance against risk of illnesses, death, old age, accidents, loss of livelihood assistance and contingencies as locally required
  • incorporation into official labour force and other economic statistics

HomeNet South Asia offers details of the declaration here.

Learn more about the world’s home-based workers here.

Read Supporting Women Home-Based Workers: The Approach of the Self-Employed Women’s Association in India by Shalini Sinha  

Meet a home-based garment worker who embroiders clothes that reach retail stores on distant shores: Small World, Big Goals: Profile of a Home-Based Garment Worker in Delhi  

Find out how some of Pakistan’s home-based workers are gaining voice and visibility.  

Read home-based worker news from around the world.