Home-Based Workers in Pakistan

Provincial governments in Pakistan began adopting policies in 2013 that benefit and protect home-based workers. Read more.

Pakistani woman sewing

News about Home-Based Workers in Pakistan

Recent news stories have focused on the contributions and rights of home-based workers in Pakistan.

  • 30 November 2012: Livelihood issues of home based workers discussed - At a seminar organized by HomeNet Pakistan, home-based workers' demands were shared with government representatives and the hardships caused by poor urban planning were shared.
  • 19 October 2012: Pakistan Convention: ‘Home-based Workers Must Unite.’ The Express Tribune. Home-based workers (HBWs) must unite on a single platform to raise their voice, get the government to ratify ILO Convention 177 (on home-based work) and strive for the implementation of Minimum Wage Act, participants at the Home-Based Workers Convention concluded on Thursday.
  • 19 October 2012: Pakistan: Government Must Implement National Policy for Home Based Workers and Ratify ILO Convention 177 Asian Human Rights Commission. Labour Education Foundation.Home-based workers (HBWs) in Pakistan must
    unite on a platform to raise their collective voice, to claim their
    rights, to make government institutions responsive towards their needs,
    to pressurize government to ratify the ILO convention 177 on Home Work
    and to strive for implementation of Minimum Wage Act.
  • 128 October 2012: Pakistan Legislation Demanded for Home-Based Women Workers Daily Times. The number of home-based women workers is
    rising in Pakistan at a rate of 8.91 percent per annum and around 12
    millions women are working within the informal sector but they have no
    legal protection as no legislation has been done for them at federal or
    provincial level.
  • February 2012: The Business Recorder in Pakistan published "Monitoring Home-Based Workers' Rights: Setting up of Independent Commission Stressed." Brief: Participants of a provincial workshop, conducted jointly by Baidarie Sialkot and HomeNet Pakistan with support from UN-WOMEN and ILO Pakistan, demanded through a consensus resolution that "Pakistan should endorse ILO Convention C177, an independent Commission should be set up to monitor the state of affairs of rights of home-based workers (HBWs), amendments be made in the Labour laws and the number of workers should be reduced from 50 to seven in a factory entitled of forming the "workers union", status of "worker" should be given to the HBWs and Nadra should be advised to include specific columns in the forms to record the economic activities of the women at homes."
  • 29 April 2011: Pakistan Today wrote about a HomeNet Pakistan event in "Giving home-based workers their due"
  • 29 March 2012: The Express Tribune carried "Capacity-Building: ‘Laws Should Uphold Treaty Commitments’" by Shamsul Islam. Brief: Democratic Commission for Human Development Director Tanveer Jahan told participants at a workshop, organised by the Association of Women for Awareness and Motivation (AWAM), that the government should ensure that laws enacted in the country are in accordance with international treaties on human rights to which the country is a party, while Bushra Khaliq highlighted the exploitation women workers face in the informal sector of the economy, where there are no laws to protect the workers.
  • March 2012:  The Pakistan Observer filed the report, "ILO, UN Women SIgn Letter of Intent." The International Labour Organization (ILO) and the UN Women had signed a Letter of Intent to develop a common approach to advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment initiatives. The initiative is expected to lead to a close partnership on key thematic areas, including women’s voice, leadership and participation, and women’s economic empowerment.

Workshop: Understanding the Supply Chain for Home-Based Workers in Pakistan

 April 2012 in Lahore, Pakistan

A workshop on mapping of supply chain of home-based workers in Pakistan was organized by WIEGO and HomeNet Pakistan, in collaboration with HomeNet South Asia. The event took place on 9-10 April in Lahore. Participants included representatives from organizations and groups of home-based workers who make everything from shoes and jewelry to cane window blinds and footballs. The workshop helped participants to understand:

  • a) which supply chains the members of HomeNet Pakistan are engaged in; and

    b) what services and other interventions the affiliated member organizations of HomeNet Pakistan provide to home-based workers.

    These areas have been identified as information gaps for home-based workers who are either members of or supported by the organizations that make up the HomeNets. The information learned is being used to help the HomeNets devise strategies that may improve the working conditions of home-based workers. The goal of the workshop was to review the information already collated from members, identify the gaps in the information, and plan further research by HomeNet Pakistan members with home-based workers to build an understanding of the supply chains they are involved in.

    Elaine Jones, Global Trade Director for WIEGO, facilitated the workshop, which was funded under Inclusive Cities.