The Workers’ Voices webinar series aims to provide a space for learning and exchange where membership-based organizations (MBO) and networks of informal workers can learn about:
- innovative policy advocacy and organizing strategies during the COVID-19 crisis; and
- positive policy responses and/or MBO interventions which support informal workers during the pandemic.
Coping with COVID-19: SEWA’s Domestic Workers on the Pandemic and Beyond
From August 27, 2020. Presentations are in English, Hindi and Malayalam.
During the COVID-19 crisis and nationwide lockdown in India, many woke up to the role that domestic workers play in our daily lives. However, that realisation didn’t bring support with it. As one of the groups most severely impacted, domestic workers in India have seen a profound shift in their work and are still dealing with the fallout from the loss of livelihood during the lockdown.
In this webinar, Pratima (a domestic worker and member of SEWA Delhi) and Nirmala (a domestic worker and member of SEWA Kerala), will be discussing the impact of the lockdown on their life, the changing nature of their work and what challenges they continue to face as a result of the crisis. Representatives from SEWA give a contextual understanding of the different policy responses in the two states, how SEWA has supported domestic workers, the challenges they still see coming in the future and what steps are needed to advocate for the sector. The panel was moderated by Shalini Sinha & included interventions from SEWA organizers.
Using Learnings from the Ebola Crisis: Sierra Leone Street Vendors Organize
From July 9, 2020. Presentations in English.
From 2014-2016, Sierra Leone experienced a deadly outbreak of the highly contagious Ebola virus. Over the course of three years, citizens in Sierra Leone experienced a series of lockdowns and quarantines. During these lockdowns, getting access to reliable and timely public health information was essential, and the Sierra Leone Traders’ Union (SLeTU) played an important role in ensuring its members were well-informed.
In this webinar, Vandie Lansana (Vice President of the Sierra Leone Traders’ Union) discusses what they learnt during the Ebola outbreak, and how they have used those lessons to organize and assist their members to sustain their livelihoods during the COVID-19 pandemic. The webinar is co-moderated by Pat Horn, StreetNet International Senior Advisor. The learnings from Ebola are also discussed in a WIEGO blog.
Positioning Waste Pickers as Essential Service Providers: Learning from the Asociación de Recicladores de Bogotà
From July 10, 2020. Presentations in Spanish.
In 2013, the Asociación de Recicladores de Bogotá (ARB) won a decades-long battle for inclusion, recognition and remuneration for waste collection, transport, and public recycling services. Supported by seven Constitutional Court rulings and strong advocacy by waste pickers in Bogota, official figures now show that 87 municipalities across Colombia have introduced systems where at least one waste pickers organization is being paid for their recycling services.
But, with the spread of COVID-19, waste pickers were facing new threats to their livelihoods. In this webinar, Nohra Padilla (ARB) will discuss how the ARB positioned waste pickers as essential service providers in the quarantine period, how they’ve organized to ensure workers are adequately protected against the pandemic, and the challenges that still exist for waste pickers who continue to provide recycling services during the pandemic. The webinar will be co-moderated by Federico Parra, WIEGO Regional Coordinator, Waste Pickers Latin America.