Informal Economy

Decent Work Forum: ‘With a Union, We May Fight Together’

Ending human trafficking. Ensuring all employers treat workers fairly. Giving voice to migrant workers around the world. Creating a world in which women are treated equally to men. These are some of the broad goals participants at the Solidarity Center Forum on Decent Work Forum for Agricultural Women and Decent Workers identified in a morning… [READ MORE]

Decent Work Forum: Sharing Strategies for Success

Following heartfelt rounds of songs on workers’ struggles and union solidarity, some 30 worker rights advocates launched the second day of the Forum on Decent Work for Agricultural Women and Domestic Workers. Discussions centered on the lack of migrant worker rights and the commonalities between the treatment of domestic workers and farm workers, and participants… [READ MORE]

El Salvador Embroidery Workers Defy Odds to Form Union

In isolated rural areas across El Salvador, thousands of women work from their homes hand-embroidering intricate patterns on pieces of cloth they later return completed to factories to be sewn into finished garments. To meet the factory’s production deadlines, the women typically work 16 hours a day, seven days a week, and those who do… [READ MORE]

Forum Opens on Promoting Women Workers’ Rights

To promote the rights of women workers, especially women domestic workers and women farm workers, it is essential to seek solutions to build women’s capacity to defend their rights to equality, decent work and an end to violence and abuse, according to Hind Cherrouk, Solidarity Center director for North Africa as she opened a three-day forum… [READ MORE]

Kenya Union: Ban on Labor Recruiting Agencies Should Stay

The Central Organization of Trade Unions–Kenya (COTU-K) said the country’s recent decision to lift its ban on workers migrating to Qatar and Saudi Arabia for jobs is “ill advised,” and urges the government to keep the ban in place until the Ministry of Labor provides a report that shows working conditions have improved. “The ban… [READ MORE]

Social Justice Unionism: Labor Can Make Change

“Informal workers are organizing and they will organize as long as there is injustice and oppression,” says Sue Schurman, distinguished professor of Labor Studies and Employment Relations at Rutgers University. Opening a Solidarity Center book launch and panel discussions on Informal Workers and Collective Action: A Global Perspective this morning, Schurman also cautioned that unless… [READ MORE]

Economy in Crisis: Jobs in Zimbabwe ‘Aren’t Paying’

  • November 6, 2017
  • Christopher Dunn

In Zimbabwe, “there is no economy to talk about in the moment,” says Peter Mutasa, president of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU), a Solidarity Center ally. “Everyone is living on subsistence and selling in the streets. Those jobs are not paying. They don’t offer decent protection. They’re not decent jobs.” Mutasa discussed Zimbabwe’s… [READ MORE]

Zimbabwe Vendor Ban Targets Vulnerable Workers

The government in Zimbabwe is moving to ban market vendors in Harare at a time when more than 90 percent of the workforce labors in the informal economy and 85 percent or more Zimbabweans are seeking decent work. “People who are into street vending are not into it for their liking, but are being forced… [READ MORE]

Decent Work Day: Focus on Living Wages

  • October 5, 2017
  • Christopher Dunn

When Mwahamisi Josiah Makori, a Kenyan mother of three who worked as a domestic worker in Saudi Arabia, first arrived at her new employer’s house, she was given only 20 minutes before she began work. After that, she began a three-month period which involved hard labor, brutal sleeping conditions, and no pay. For three months,… [READ MORE]

Victory for Kenya Domestic Workers Migrating for Jobs

Kenyans going abroad to work as domestic workers will be required to have contracts, salaries and details of their work assignments before they leave, according to the (Kenya) Daily Nation. The draft policy, crafted by the Labor Ministry and the Kenya Union of Domestic, Hotel, Educational Institutions, Hospitals and Allied Workers (KUDHEIHA), is part of… [READ MORE]

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