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73pc of HBWs denied basic rights

LAHORE: Some 73 per cent of the 12 million or so home-based workers in Pakistan are women who in spite of contributing a lot to national economy by playing a vital role mainly in the manufacturing industry are deprived of their basic rights as a worker.

This was stated by Sarsabz Foundation chief executive Dr Naveeda Shoaib at a meeting of home-based women workers here on Sunday. She said that ILO’s Convention-177 pertained to the rights of home-based workers and identified nine areas of decent work deficits which HBWs generally confronted with.

Punjab and Sindh have the highest number of HBWs and as economic situation worsens, the numbers had been drastically increasing among young women who have to join this type of work either to support their household or to bear their own expenses.

She urged the Punjab government to announce the provincial policy on home-based women workers and enforce it effectively.

Most home-based women workers fall outside the legal framework as they have few or no collective bargaining forums. “Our main focus is to ensure that platforms are available and activated for HBWs in claiming their rights through the cooperative model and that they hold the skills to manage these cooperatives,” she added.

She said the Sarsabz Foundation took initiative in collaboration with ICMC, a Swiss NGO, to organise home-based women workers through re-activating women cooperatives, advocacy and capacity building in Jhang and Faisalabad districts.


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