May 2, 2014
We would like to congratulate workers in the Arab world, especially labour migrants, as we all work towards the goal of insuring migrant rights and peace in the region. On this Labour Day we should reflect on the increasing violence targeted towards this vulnerable group. Migrant workers face various discrimination and poor working conditions, including; working days that surpass 10 hours, prejudice in employment and occupation, unfair conditions, alongside physical and sexual abuse and the normalisation of a system that ignores their basic rights.
We call Arab countries to affirm the rights stated in their respective constitutions and to uphold international laws that have been ratified, so that we can put a stop to violence, discrimination and the slavery of labour migrants.
The Arab Network for Migrants’ Rights calls on Arab governments to respect their international obligations, provide protection to labour migrants by securing their basic rights and fulfilling their obligations to this category by ensuring national policies are followed through, and in any instance where there are insufficient labour legislations, amending these so that they are in line with international obligations that have been set. All this must be done in order to establish national mechanisms to protect labour migrants’ rights so that they may be granted a similar status to national workers.
The Arab Network for Migrants’ Rights asks Arab governments to ratify ILO convention number 189, in order to provide legal protection to this group of workers and to ratify the UN convention on “The Protection of the Rights of all Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families”, which ensures the basic rights of all labour migrants, regardless of their legal situation, and the regulation of employment for migrants seeking work.
Once again we congratulate all labour migrants on this symbolic day and call upon them to enhance their knowledge of their basic rights so that they cannot be abused under any circumstances. We also ask for them to respect the legal methods and procedures of employment so that they do not to fall prey to exploitation and trafficking.
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