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Theme: Informal Economy
Occupational Group(s): Home-Based Workers
By Dave, Janhavi.

This article describes the situation of home-based workers in India. It cites studies by WIEGO and HomeNet South Asia.

Pakistan Workers demand decent work, adequate wages The Nation Pakistan . (8 October 2017)

Trade unionists took out a rally here on Saturday to mark International Decent Work Day. The rally was organised by National Trade Union Federation and Home Based Women Workers Federation on the appeal of Industrial Global Union.

Myanmar Thailand Call to guard domestic workers' rights Bangkok Post . (27 September 2017)
By Charoensuthipan, Penchan.

Labour advocacy groups are calling on the government to better protect the rights and welfare of migrant domestic workers in the light of Myanmar's rule barring its citizens from getting jobs in other countries as home workers. Poonsap Tulaphan, manager of Homenet Thailand, who advocates for home workers, said Myanmar in particular does not allow its people to be employed as home workers under the memorandum of understanding (MoU) system.

"Eight out of ten working women in urban India are informally employed. The women who work in garment factories, construction sites, as rag-pickers, tailors, and domestic helpers have no social security, no formal places of work and no legal contracts to protect their rights. The Startup Wednesday show brings to you the challenges of home-based working women and startups that are employing and empowering women in India. Watch as experts, entrepreneurs and the working women themselves talk about the issues they face."


WIEGO Home-based Worker Specialist Shalini Sinha and Firoza Mehrotra of HomeNetSouth Asia are interviewed in this video.

Pakistan Factory workers demand efforts to safeguard labour rights The International News . (24 April 2017)

Marking the fourth anniversary of Rana Plaza disaster in Bangladesh that claimed lives of over 1,100 factory workers, labour support organisations and trade unions in Karachi organised a protest on Sunday in solidarity with the victims.

Pakistan CM lauded for approving HBW’s policy The Nation . (22 April 2017)

HomeNet Pakistan and home based workers of Punjab has welcomed the Punjab chief minster’s initiative to approve the HBW’s policy in provincial cabinet. The policy approval makes Punjab the second province in the country to legally recognise home-based workers. It is indeed a step forward toward the recognition of the home based workers of the province.


The Policy on Home Based Workers is intended to develop strategies, plans and programmes for the protection & promotion of rights and benefits of the Home Based Workers (HBWs). The goal of the policy is to recognise and accept the rights of the HBWs through legislative and administrative actions; accord legal equality; focus on their needs, concerns and demands through an institutional approach at all levels.

Pakistan Government's initiative to approve HBWs policy lauded Pakistan Today . (22 April 2017)

HomeNet Pakistan and home-based workers of Punjab have welcomed Punjab Chief Minster Shahbaz Sharif’s initiative to approve the HBWs policy in the Provincial Cabinet.

Pakistan Speakers stress provision of rights to home-based workers The Nation Pakistan . (17 March 2017)

Speaking at a one-day provincial conference on Home Based Workers (HBWs) on ‘Finalisation of the Implementation of Strategy for HBWs in Sindh,’, jointly organised by HomeNet Pakistan, Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research (PILER) and Oxfam at PILER Centre here on Thursday, they demanded the government to rectify the Convention C177 (Home  Work Convention, 1996).

By Zofeen, Ebrahim.

Zehra Khan has much to celebrate on International Women’s Day. It is exactly four months since members of the Home-Based Women Workers Federation (HBWWF) in Sindh province, Pakistan – of which Khan is secretary general – finally received legal recognition.The province’s chief minister, Syed Murad Ali Shah, signed a policy that means the region’s estimated 5 million home-based workers – the majority of whom are women – can register as workers and access benefits.

“It was an important day not only for the history of the labour movement in Sindh and Pakistan, but also for south Asia,” says Khan, whose federation has more than 4,500 members. “Once they are legally accepted as workers, they can be registered with the government-run social security institution, [and] be part of [the] workers’ welfare board to enjoy benefits like health, education and housing, as well as those offered after retirement,” she adds.
Almost 80% of an estimated 12 million Pakistani home-based workers are women. As well as unpaid domestic work, the women often spend up to 10 hours a day making garments, footwear, sports goods, and arts and crafts behind closed doors. Their work is often invisible to the rest of the world, despite having propped up the country’s informal economy for so long.

Kenya How MCU is helping in 'building a future with decent work' Investment News . (21 February 2017)

Elizabeth Nzilani Peter represented the Machakos Cooperative Union at the 105th International Labour Conference in Geneva, where the theme was Building a Future with Decent Work. Attended by Over 6,000 delegates, the conference was an opportunity to highlight the contribution made by co-operatives to decent work. The following is an interview with Elizabeth.