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Theme: Informal Economy
Occupational Group(s): Domestic Workers
Region(s): East Asia & Southeast Asia ; Thailand
By Bangkok, Coconuts.

Workers asked the government to start enforcing the issued regulations that protect their rights. Enforcement of these regulations would help to improve the sometimes poor working and living conditions of employees including maids and nannies.

Thailand Burmese Domestic Workers in Thailand Demand Greater Protection The Irrawaddy . (16 June 2016)

Burmese domestic workers in Thailand, who are not protected by existing domestic legislation and remain highly vulnerable to exploitation, have called on the Thai government to do more to ensure their basic labor rights.


The Burmese migrants spoke at a seminar on Thursday marking the fifth International Domestic Workers’ Day in the northern Thai city of Chiang Mai.

By Worley, Will.

An advert for supermarket giant Tesco's Thai subsidiary depicting a domestic worker being slapped has been criticised.


Labour rights group Women in Informal Employment: Globalising and Organising (WIEGO) condemned the advert:  “WIEGO was at the forefront on campaigning for a convention on domestic work which was achieved in 2011 in extending labour rights to domestic workers," Mike Bird, Operations Director at WIEGO, told The Independent. “Part of people’s labour rights is that they are not physically abused by their employers. Any suggestion that that is OK, we’d certainly take issue with.”

Myanmar Thailand Domestic worker from Myanmar rescues sister from decade of slavery Coconuts Bangkok . (19 November 2015)

Thailand hosts around 3 million migrant workers, 80 percent of them from next door Myanmar. They take jobs in construction, agriculture, the seafood industry and domestic work. While many migrants work in what campaigners call "3D" jobs that are dirty, dangerous and demeaning, domestic workers can suffer the most abuse because they work behind closed doors, in isolation, hidden from public view.

Angola Argentina Bahrain Belgium Benin Bolivia Brazil Chile Colombia Costa Rica Dominican Republic India Indonesia Italy Kenya Mauritius Morocco Namibia Nicaragua Paraguay Philippines Singapore South África Thailand United Arab Emirates Uruguay Venezuela Zâmbia 2012: A Year of Progress for Domestic Workers Human Rights Watch . (10 January 2013)

2012 brought significant progress for the rights of domestic workers, with dozens of countries adopting policy or legislative measures to strengthen protections for domestic workers, including 8 that moved to ratify the ILO Convention Concerning Decent Work for Domestic Workers (ILO Convention 189, Domestic Workers Convention).  Below is a summary of noteworthy developments.

Thailand Housemaids get days off, paid leave Bangkok Post . (14 November 2012)

More than four million maids employed in houses nationwide will be entitled to at least one day off a week under new regulations to improve their working conditions, effective from Friday.

Thailand Housemaids: Right to day off & holidays Bangkok Post . (14 November 2012)
By Charoensuthipan, Penchan.

More than four million maids employed in houses nationwide will be entitled to at least one day off a week under new regulations to improve their working conditions, effective from Friday.

Thailand Thai Ministerial Regulations to Protect Domestic Workers' Rights Approved International Domestic Workers' NetWork . (8 November 2012)
By IDWN, .

The ministerial regulations to protect domestic workers' rights had been approved on 30 Oct.

Thailand ILO Thailand Welcomes New Regulation to Improve Conditions for Domestic Workers International Labour Organization . (6 November 2012)
By ILO, .

The International Labour Organization (ILO) Country Office for Thailand welcomes the passing of a new Ministerial Regulation that will better protect domestic workers in the Kingdom of Thailand, approved on 30 October and to be implemented this year.

Concerns about Asian countries doing less to protect the rights of migrant workers and the reality that most countries have not ratified United Nations and International Labour Organization (ILO) conventions on the rights of migrant workers were high on the agenda of a recent ecumenical workshop on migrant workers held in Bangkok, Thailand.