Labor Migration
labor migration, Solidarity Center, worker rights

The Solidarity Center strives for rights for people on the move by ensuring migrant workers are fully able to exercise their workplace, social, economic and democratic rights. Solidarity Center/Jeanne Hallacy

Labor migration feeds the global economy. Hundreds of millions of migrant workers worldwide generate billions of dollars in global remittances. They are domestic workers, construction and agricultural workers, factory and service workers, teachers and professionals. Migrant workers often travel long distances due to a lack of decent work at home to support their families and build a better life. They frequently are denied the most basic human rights. For instance, most destination countries deny migrant workers the right to form unions, and explicitly exclude them from labor law protections, and women migrant workers are often subject to gender-based violence and harassment in their workplaces. The Solidarity Center strives for worker rights for people on the move by ensuring migrant worker rights are a key part of the labor movement. We cultivate an understanding of how exploitative labor migration management schemes are a widespread means by which to undercut worker wages, create precarious work and pit workers against each other. And, in addressing these structural ills, we emphasize a response that understands the intersectionalities and identities that make migrant workers especially vulnerable. Our goal is to ensure that migrant workers are fully able to exercise their workplace rights, as well as their social, economic and democratic rights. We also focus on the creation of decent work in home countries so workers can migrate by choice and not due to economic coercion. We recognize that migration is not caused by a single factor that “pushes” workers to migrate. In doing so, we bring our unique worker rights voice more broadly by emphasizing that everyone deserves dignity at work regardless of status—climate migrants, economic migrants and conflict refugees. We work to achieve this through programs that focus on union organizing and collective bargaining, policy advocacy, access to justice, safe migration and, more broadly, the ability to exercise fundamental freedoms as democratic participants.
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migration, migrant workers, Freedoms on the Move report, Solidarity Center,, CIVICUS

Freedoms on the Move, a 2019 report by Solidarity Center and CIVICUS, is an urgent call to action for unions and other civil society groups to include migrant workers and refugees in advancing civic rights.

Experts Share Strategies for Stopping Wage Theft of Migrant Workers

A significant number of migrant workers worldwide are not paid for work performed, and legal remedies to recover them are few. But new policies have proven effective in ensuring migrant workers are treated fairly, a global panel of experts said yesterday. “Paying...

Polish Federation Safeguards Ukrainian Migrant Worker Rights

A far-reaching project by Poland’s largest union federation is providing comprehensive assistance to Ukrainian refugees to ensure they have fundamental rights on the job as they take on new employment in the country. “When the war in Ukraine broke out and refugees...

Governments Must Listen to Migrant Perspectives

When addressing migration, governments must focus on human rights: “When you prioritize human rights, you naturally shift from criminalization and focus on rights-based approaches,” says Mishka Pillay, a migration and lived experience advocate and campaigner....
Justice for Wage Theft: Championing Migrant Workers

Justice for Wage Theft: Championing Migrant Workers

Millions of migrant workers trapped in pandemic lockdowns were forced to leave their employers and return home—bearing all the costs even as they often were unpaid for the work they had performed, says Michael Joachim, co-founder and director of the Plantation Rural...

Wage Theft and Migrant Workers’ Access to Justice

Wage Theft and Migrant Workers’ Access to Justice

Millions of workers around the world engage in paid labor—yet do not receive their wages. In addition, getting employers to pay workers what they are owed often is difficult—especially for those who have migrated for work, according to a new report from the Migrant...

RIGHTS ADVOCATES BUILD SOUTHEAST ASIA CAMPAIGN AGAINST WAGE THEFT

RIGHTS ADVOCATES BUILD SOUTHEAST ASIA CAMPAIGN AGAINST WAGE THEFT

On this year’s July 30 World Day Against Trafficking in Persons, a coalition of rights organizations including the Solidarity Center are highlighting widespread wage theft perpetrated against Southeast Asia’s migrant workers. Although this form of labor exploitation...

THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC AND WORKERS IN CAMBODIA

THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC AND WORKERS IN CAMBODIA

As a new wave of COVID-19 hits Cambodia, a new study recommends urgent action to ensure garment and tourism workers workers do not experience widespread loss of jobs and wages as they did in 2020. The Center for Policy Studies survey is supported by Solidarity Center...

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