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Published: 2017-11-15   

Consensus on Protection & Promotion of Migrant Worker’s Rights, pirmado na!

A commitment by ASEAN member-states to formulate a plan of action to implement the rights specified.

A commitment by ASEAN member-states to formulate a plan of action to implement the rights specified.

By: Souqpinoy Staff
Credits: (with reports from Rappler)
Photo Credits: (asean2017.ph)

Isinara ng mga pinuno ng Southeast Asian Nations ang ASEAN Summit 2017 sa pamamagitan ng pagpirma sa “ASEAN Consensus on the Protection and Promotion of the Rights of Migrant Workers” noong Martes, Nobyembre 14. Ito ay followup document sa parehong consensus na dati nang isinulat noong Enero 2007 sa Cebu.

Si Presidente Rodrigo Duterte, representing the Philippines as ASEAN chair, ang nagprisinta ng pirmadong dokumento kay ASEAN Secretary-General Le Luong Minh.

Nilalaman nito ang mga sumusunod na provisions:

  • Fair treatment of migrant workers with respect to gender and nationality
  • Visitation rights by family members
  • Prohibition against confiscation of passports and overcharging of placement or recruitment fees
  • Protection against violence and sexual harassment in the workplace
  • Regulation of recruiters for better protection of workers
  • Right to fair and appropriate remuneration benefits and their right to join trade unions and association

It also serves as a commitment by ASEAN member-states to formulate a plan of action to implement the rights specified. This plan will be made during next year’s meetings under the chairmanship of Singapore.

The creation of the consensus took more than 10 years because parties could not agree on the legal nature of the document, the protection of undocumented workers and the coverage of migrant workers’ families.

(Photo Credits: Wikipedia)

Philippines and Indonesia, both source countries, wanted a legally-binding framework. Singapore and Malaysia only wanted the document to be a guide to avoid the increase in the number of undocumented migrants. Both countries are migration hubs for workers.

Despite being a landmark gain, the consensus was still silent on the issue of undocumented workers. There are around 10 million migrant workers in the region, many of whom are staying in foreign countries without proper papers. Philippine statistics, meanwhile, show that there are around 212,435 overseas Filipino workers (OFW) in Southeast Asia.

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