- Published on Wednesday, 09 September 2009 17:21
- Written by BWU
Report Highlight the situation of women migrant workers from Burma working in Burma neighboring countries such as Thailand and China.
The inspiration for the report came from the many conversations, story reporting that BWU personnel had with migrant workers at the drop-in centre and library in Mae Sot. Many migrant workers were frustrated at the wall of silence surrounding their lives and expressed that they wanted their stories to be made known. It is their hope that once light has been shed on their cycle of suffering, it would no longer continue.
It is very important in this report to point out the mismanagement and self only interest of the current military regime, different ages, sex and background of people from every part of Burma are closing to the neighboring countries to seek for jobs. Even they have the 3 Ds (dirty, difficult and dangerous) jobs, they will continue to work because the work condition is even worse in Burma and the payment is low which cannot cover family survival. Burma is a deteriorating country and listed one of the world poorest country and bad human rights records.
The current regime is only care about controlling and holding the power into their hands no matter what really happening in the country, how much people are in need of help and facing with starvation. They military regime will never care. They used more than half of the national budget for recruiting army to kills its own people. In the report, we would like to point out lack of interest and not solving the problem of its country and not consider more than half of the Burmese people are working as slave in the other countries. The problem of migrant workers will not be solve if the Burmese military regime is still in the power. We want to provide information to United Nations, Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women, Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants, and Special Rapporteur on Burma, International Labor Organization and international NGOs and relevant UN bodies.
Migrant workers are the ‘invisible many’ as they are often ignored due to their lack of legal status both within their country of employment and within international contexts. Although migrant workers’ conditions stems from the same source of oppression (i.e. lack of political, economical stability and deteriorating conditions in Burma), their situation is often not reported as that of refugees or IDPs. Part of the reason is that IDPs and refugees are associated directly with armed conflict, civil war and human rights abuses, whereas the migrant worker is seen merely as economic refugees. Women migrant workers’ experience in particular needs to be distinguished as they are doubly victimized within their country of employment due to their gender and their illegal status. Women workers are often placed in poor working conditions and are more vulnerable to abuse (sexual, physical and emotional) by employers and authorities than their male counterparts.
The report on Burmese migrant women who are working Thailand and China was released on the 18 of December coincide with International Migrant Day. The report highlight the situation of women migrant continues to face double discrimination in their host countries and are particularly at risk of abuse. The report is called ‘Caught Between Two Hells’ and the author was Yee Mon Htun who is a member of BWU based in Canada. BWU has conducted 149 in depth interview with women from different sectors of the work places mostly dealing with 3D jobs such as dirty, dangerous and demeaning.
The report also spot light the double discrimination faced by women and girls workers due to their lack of legal status as well as their gender. This double marginalization means female migrant workers face grave security concerns as they regularly experience threats of sexual harassment and violence while working in host countries, BWU said in a press release. It is the BWU’s hope that by writing about these brave migrant women and girl workers sacrifices, hardships, perseverance, and their future hopes, their voices will be heard by others and advocates will work to ensure that migrant workers human rights will be protected, the group said.
The report calls on the Burmese regime and governments of host countries to protect the rights of migrants in accordance with international human rights law and provide redress when those rights are violated.
On the 19, BWU organized a report launched at the FCCT club in Bangkok where 20 people presenting NGOs, media, newspaper, radio etc…
The report launced and the report itself cover in so many radio, newspaper and websites such as DVB, RFA, BBC, NMG, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi website, Mon News, Karen News paper, and disseminated at the group email that spread around the world.