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Migrant domestic workers

Migrant domestic workers often fall victim to deceptive job offers while in their home country and are then coerced to work in conditions upon arrival to which they did not agree. They are also at a heightened risk of exploitation because of their immigration status that ties them to their employers.

NEPAL TO LEBANON

Migrant domestic workers in Lebanon experience poor living conditions and working conditions, confiscation of their passports, non-payment of wages as well as physical and sexual abuse. Some report having experienced a situation of forced labour, servitude or slavery.

THE SPONSORSHIP (KAFALA) SYSTEM

The Sponsorship System is a set of regulations that tie a worker’s resident status to a single employer (for the duration of her contract). Employers are legally responsible for the worker, which leads some to severely restrict their movements. Some workers can’t even leave the country without the permission of their employer.

LACK OF REGULATION OF RECRUITMENT AGENCIES

Agents are often responsible for abuse and deceiving workers about living and working conditions. Agencies impose high fees on both domestic workers and employers, leaving them with debt and making them vulnerable to exploitation. The fees incurred by employers are often recovered by employers by illegally deducting them from salaries.

FLAWED ‘PROTECTION’ MEASURES FROM NEPAL

In 2012, Nepalese government introduced a ban on women under the age of 30 travelling abroad for domestic work. In response, many migrant workers seek unofficial routes of migration and therefore affect the ability of domestic workers to receive support, protection and representation of their interests.

Embassies are often the last place of protection, assistance and refuge. Yet, despite the large numbers of Nepalese migrant workers in Lebanon, Nepal has not established an Embassy or a Consulate there.

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Migrant domestic workers"One day, after complaining about my conditions and salary I was beaten right away.”
Read Kamala Majhi's story
©Pete Pattisson / www.petepattisson.com


Migrant domestic  workersThe Kafala system leaves migrant domestic workers vulnerable to exploitation and abuse.
©Pete Pattisson / www.petepattisson.com