E-discussion on: Migrant Workers and Recruitment Processes
Please note that the e-discussion has now been closed. To read the consolidated reply please click here.
Migrant workers and Recruitment processes: What practices, what opportunities and challenges?
In collaboration with Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) in Paris, the EC-UN Joint Migration and Development Initiative (JMDI) is pleased to present this e-discussion “Migrant workers and Recruitment Processes: What practices, what opportunities and challenges?” This discussion will be formally launched on 10 October and will conclude on 6 November 2011.
Please access the background paper to this dicussion here.
A leader in corporate responsibility since 1992, BSR works with its global network of more than 250 member companies to develop sustainable business strategies and solutions through consulting, research, and cross-sector collaboration. Through Migration Linkages, a BSR led multi-year initiative, BSR seeks to better understand the recruitment process—from village level to factory floor—in order to identify and mitigate risks to migrating workers and to spotlight opportunities for business to protect basic rights. As a part of this initiative, BSR has recently conducted research and published its findings on the variability in the recruitment system in Indonesia and the resulting human rights risks to Indonesian migrant workers in Step Up: Improving Recruitment of Migrant Workers in Indonesia.
While many countries have robust migrant worker recruitment systems in theory, in practice, the recruitment process is often characterized by a lack of transparency and abuse at the earliest stages of recruitment. Such abuse often stems from non-standardized fees charged to migrants, the use of illegal or unofficial agents, variability of contracts and labor protection, and under-developed grievance processes. While the amelioration of such abuses is dependent upon a number of factors, including government and business action, increasing the level of awareness and information available to migrant workers is a key component.
This e-discussion involves an exploration of two topics:
1. The methods used by migrant workers to gain information about recruitment agencies, recruitment processes, and the job situations for which they are applying;
2. As workers are migrating in increasingly ‘wired’ environments with internet penetration and mobile technology enhancing access to information, the e-discussion aims to understand whether IT is helping migrants to gain access to reliable information throughout the recruitment process.
We would like to address the follwing questions during this e-discussion:
Week One and Two:
1. What are the most common methods used by migrant workers to gather information about the situation that they are moving into?
2. What formal or organized opportunities are available to migrant workers to access information about job opportunities and recruitment agencies? Similarly, what informal opportunities exist?
3. What methods are available to migrant workers to assess the credibility of the information they receive from both formal and informal sources?
4. How does the above vary by region and between men and women workers?
Week Three and Four:
1. For what purposes is internet or mobile technology currently being used by migrant workers?
2. How could internet or mobile phone technology be used to disseminate information about recruitment agencies, recruitment processes, and the job situations for which migrant workers are applying?
3. What are some of the possible constraints to these methods of information sharing and how could they be improved?
We warmly encourage members to forward this message to your networks and invite them to contribute also. The e-discussion will run for three weeks from 10 October to 6 November 2011. Please participate by emailing email@example.com or by posting your comments online in the Migration4Development forum here. Please note that responses are not automatically shared but go to the facilitation team for compilation.
The results of this e-discussion will be presented in a consolidated reply. We look forward to a rich and active discussion. Thank you for your participation!
The M4D-net Facilitation Team and BSR