Informal Economy

Buenaventura Port Workers Call for Formal Jobs

The Colombia Port Workers’ union is calling on the Ministry of Labor to follow up on promises it made during a congressional hearing this week and resume discussions with the union and the Buenaventura Port Society over formalizing 3,500 illegally outsourced workers in Buenaventura, Colombia’s largest port. Solidarity Center union partners, organized within the Mesa… [READ MORE]

Workers Bring Colombia’s Largest Port to a Halt

  • May 19, 2017
  • Solidarity Center

Workers in Buenaventura, Colombia, who are waging an indefinite work stoppage to call attention to the lack of jobs, good wages and basic public services in their community, have brought port operations and local commerce to a halt. As the country’s largest seaport, Buenaventura accounts for 60 percent of the country’s maritime trade and in… [READ MORE]

Rosalie: A Champion for Migrant Domestic Worker Rights

Workers who migrate to other countries for jobs often do not know their rights when they arrive, and many, like domestic workers, toil in isolation, where they are easily exploited by employers. Rosalie Ewengue, a domestic worker in Morocco from the Democratic Republic of Congo, was among them. But after taking part in an awareness-raising… [READ MORE]

‘We Can’t Wait for Men to Help Us. We Women Have to Do It’

Women’s economic empowerment is linked to achieving broader labor rights for workers around the globe and women must join together no matter what their interests or jobs to bring about gender equality at work, panelists said today at an AFL-CIO panel in New York City. “We’re not talking about ‘women’s rights’ and ‘worker rights’—it’s one… [READ MORE]

‘Without Worker Rights, All Other Rights Are in Jeopardy’

Labor rights are key to all human rights—and ensuring that the global human rights community champion worker rights is essential to addressing the many economic and political challenges throughout the world, according to panelists who spoke today at a United Nations side event in Geneva. “The challenge right now is for all of us in… [READ MORE]

Workers’ Equality Forum: Share Your Story!

Sam Oliver, a union shop steward at the Sime Darby Rubber and Oil plantation in Liberia, where workers live in company-provided housing, says “people lived in deplorable” conditions before joining the General Agriculture and Allied Workers Union of Liberia (GAAWUL). Today, says Oliver, a warehouse clerk on the plantation, “through the intervention of this union,… [READ MORE]

Decent Jobs at Home Means Not Risking Your Life Abroad

If working people could find good jobs, they would not be forced into a desperate search for employment in other countries, a process that means they often are exploited and abused, says Caroline Khamati Mugalla, executive secretary of the East African Trade Union Confederation (EATUC). “If I have a decent job at home, I will… [READ MORE]

‘We Don’t Park Our Human Rights at the Border’

More than 130 union leaders, migrant worker rights advocates and top international human rights officials from nearly two dozen countries were urged to take action to improve migrant worker rights in by a range of speakers on the second day of the January 25–27 Solidarity Center fair labor migration conference.  (Follow the conference on Twitter… [READ MORE]

‘Growing Level of Intolerance against Labor Migrants’

Xenophobia and racism are embedded in the daily economic and social situation of labor migrants and refugees, according to Joseph Rudigi Rukema, a sociology professor at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. “The world is witnessing a growing level of intolerance against foreign labor migrants, refugee and asylum seekers,” he s­­­­­­ays. Rukema kicked off the afternoon session… [READ MORE]

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