An Introduction to the Informal Economy for Labour Lawyers

Webinar March 2021 Law Programme
31 March 2021 - 15 December 2021

WIEGO’s Law Programme and the International Network for Lawyers Assisting Workers (ILAW) are hosting a  a multi-part series of webinars and workshops throughout 2021. The series will focus on strategic and creative litigation and advocacy strategies to enhance, protect and help realize the labour and collective rights of workers in the informal economy, including self-employed workers.

The first webinar in the series, held on March 31, introduced the diverse and vibrant informal economy to labour lawyers to enable a better understanding of the key debates on formalization. It also explained what lawyers and workers' organizations are doing to support informal workers. Speakers were: 

  • Pamhidzai Bamu, who analyzed the different employment statuses and occupational groups that form part of the informal economy. She discussed waged employment and self-employment, and legal strategies to extend labour rights, including collective bargaining.
  • Marlese von Broembsen discussed ILO Recommendation 204 concerning the Transition from the Informal to the Formal Economy and its potential for realizing self-employed workers' right to collective bargaining. She explained various regulatory and contractual strategies that street vendors have pursued in different countries.
  • Jacqueline Wamai from ILAW discussed how lawyers, informal-economy worker organizations and unions have challenged legal frameworks that exclude informal workers from rights and protections.
Informal Economy Theme
Informal Economy Topic
Event type