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More women South Asian migrant workers

27 March 2013 - The Island, Sri Lanka. The South Asia Core Group on Gender Responsive Labour Migration Management (SAGGRLMM) said last week that the number of women from South Asia migrating in search of better livelihood opportunities to support their families was on the increase.

By Dilanthi Jayamanne

The South Asia Core Group on Gender Responsive Labour Migration Management (SAGGRLMM) said last week that the number of women from South Asia migrating in search of better livelihood opportunities to support their families was on the increase.

Deputy Representative and Officer in Charge, UN Women’s Office for Bhutan India, Maldives and Sri Lanka, Sushma Kapoor observed that women migrant workers faced discrimination and exploitation at all stages of migration and therefore it was imperative that measures be adopted to make migration safe for them.

Addressing the media on Friday (22), following two days of discussions on the SAGGLMM in Colombo on the ‘safe mobility of women migrant workers,’ Kapoor said that a policy framework would be formulated after the discussions which would urge governments to accelerate efforts to ensure the safe mobility for women migrant workers.

She said that the document to be prepared would be based on what had been discussed by the 90 participants representing 11 South Asian region and gulf countries which mainly receive migrant workers.

Kapoor said that several recommendations had been made including a call for better data documentation and the acknowledgement of the contribution made by women migrant workers, better information and support services to prepare them for their travel abroad and the need for a mechanism to promote collaboration among governments in South Asia to ensure better working conditions.

Economic Advisor, Ministry of Overseas India Affairs and Co-chair South Asia core group on Gender responsive Labour Migration Management, Ranjana Kale said that safe migration would help women migrant workers to live and work with dignity. "We have to facilitate the positive aspects of migration in which both sending and receiving countries have a role to play to promote safe migration of women. Since international migration is a cross border issue the challenges faced by women migrant workers are best addressed through regional cooperation."

Responding to a question Kale said that the matters which had been discussed would be made known to respective governments. However, it would take some time as there was documentation involved.

Meanwhile Deputy General Manager and Media Spokesman for the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLFEB), Manjula Randeniya when contacted said the government had taken all possible measures to address issues of gender discrimination and exploitation faced by women migrant workers.

Source: http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_cat=article-details&page=article-details&code_title=75481

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