The Real Life of Fishing Labour

Want to work as a fisher in Thailand? Know your rights! Watch this video to find out how you can prepare for working as a fisher in Thailand to protect yourself and your family.

Migrant workers comprise most of the workforce in Thailand’s fishing sector. Ensuring that workers are aware of their rights and know how to find help to protect them is essential to keep them safe at work, preventing and ending abusive labour practices.

IOM X and the International Labour Organisation (ILO) are launching a new video to make sure fishers know their rights at work, and how to protect them.

The videos are part of the Ship to Shore Rights Project, funded by the European Union and the IOM X campaign. Scroll down to watch the videos, and find additional resources here.

Myanmar language

Thai language

6 fresh campaign ideas to help end forced labour

16.5 million people are trapped in situations of forced labour in the Asia Pacific. How can we empower consumers to make smarter choices and help end this?

By Tara Dermott, IOM X Program Leader

Consider this: there are currently 16.5 million people trapped in situations of forced labour in the Asia Pacific. Many of these are being exploited in the manufacturing industry. It’s a staggering statistic, and one that surprises many people I talk to.

Consumers tend to feel far removed from this fact. We don’t see the people who work long hours every day to produce clothes, assemble electronics, package food, or make shoes.

This year, Fashion Revolution Week (23-27 April 2018) marks five years since the collapse of Rana Plaza in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Tragically, 1,134 garment workers, working in unimaginably difficult conditions, lost their lives when a five-storey commercial building collapsed.

How can we encourage consumers to be more socially aware in their purchases? IOM X visited Thammasat University on the outskirts of Bangkok to brainstorm ways that strategic communication could be used to increase socially responsible consumerism here in Thailand.

Together, 30 students from the Faculty of Journalism and Mass Communication, came up with six concepts for campaigns in just 30 minutes!

  1. The Science of Being Socially Responsible

Focused on workers made to work with chemicals and other unsafe materials, this campaign would leverage science fairs in schools and public places to create opportunities for youth and their families to learn more about safety and how they can support the safety of workers. A game for mobile would also be developed as a fun and engaging way for youth to learn more about this important issue.

  1. Who Made my Shoes?

Imagine going into your favourite athletic footwear store and selecting a pair of sneakers to try on. This campaign concept is that when you receive the box there is a photo and story of the worker who made your shoe. In this way, the footwear brand can demonstrate that good products are made by happy and willing workers. Furthermore, a percentage of the profit from this line would go towards organizations that support workers.

  1. Fashion Rewind

This advocacy campaign would encourage consumers to call upon their favourite companies to Know the Chain, encouraging transparency and action to rid supply chains of slavery.  The concept is to have one short video that rewinds from the moment a consumer purchases a product back through all of the workers who were involved in the production from raw materials to manufacturing. Once this video has grabbed your attention, you can then tune in to watch a longer documentary program to learn more about the current state of supply chains of your favourite products.

  1. Shake the Tag

Inspired by the Cruelty Free tag movement of makeup products that don’t test on animals, this campaign would promote Sweatshop Free products. Engaging influencers, such as fashion bloggers, would help to spread the word and credibility to this campaign.

  1. #LabourOrSlavery

Leveraging the power of media and the power of movement, this campaign would call out brands that have documented instances of exploitation in their supply chains. It would also encourage consumers to exercise their right of choice to protect the human rights of workers. This strong campaign concept has clear links to the ongoing Clean Clothes Campaign telling brands to take responsibility for their workers.  

Regardless of how we learn about and engage with this issue, we need to remember that as consumers, our purchasing habits have an impact and the more we know about the people behind the products we buy, the better informed our decisions will be.

Thanks again to the brilliant students of MC309 Media Centre at Thammasat University!

ស្ត្រីខ្មែរលុងខ្លួនចេញទៅណាមិនរួច ក្រោយពីត្រូវបានគេបោកយកទៅរៀបការនៅបរទេស។

ការដកហូតលិខិតឆ្លងដែន ការបង្អត់អាហារ ការហាមឃាត់ការទាក់ទងនិងការផ្លាស់ទី រួមនឹងការគម្រាមឱ្យសងការចំណាយថ្លៃធ្វើដំណើរ បង្ខំឱ្យស្ត្រីខ្មែរជាច្រើនត្រូវតែរៀបការ នៅបរទេស។​

គ្រួសាររបស់នាងចាន់ធី* នៅទីជនបទក្នុងប្រទេសកម្ពុជាមានប្រាក់តិចតួចសម្រាប់ការចំណាយផ្សេងៗ។ ប្រាក់ដែលបានមកពីការធ្វើស្រែចំការមិនគ្រប់គ្រាន់សម្រាប់ការចំណាយទេ។ នាងបានមកធ្វើការងារនៅភ្នំពេញ ប៉ុន្តែទទួលបានប្រាក់ខែតិចតួច។ នាងនៅចងចាំថា ថ្ងៃមួយ ម្តាយនាងបានទូរស័ព្ទមករកនាង។ «ម្តាយរបស់ខ្ញុំថាធ្វើការងារនៅភ្នំពេញ កូនបានប្រាក់តែ $១០០ ក្នុងមួយខែដើម្បីជួយគ្រួសារ។ វាមិនគ្រប់គ្រាន់ទេ»។ នេះជាចំណុចចាប់ផ្តើមនៃបោកបញ្ឆោត ការបង្ខិតបង្ខំ ការរំលោភបំពាន និងការរៀបការដោយបង្ខំ។

រឿងរ៉ាវរបស់នាងចាន់ធីគឺជារឿងរ៉ាវមួយក្នុងចំណោមរឿងរ៉ាវរបស់នារីខ្មែរជាច្រើននាក់ ដែលត្រូវបានយកមកវិភាគ នៅក្នុងរបាយការណ៍នៃការស្រាវជ្រាវស្តីពីការៀបការដោយបង្ខំរវាងនារីខ្មែរនិងបុរសចិន (PDF) ដែលUN-ACT និងអង្គការដៃគូបានចេញផ្សាយកាលពីឆ្នាំ២០១៦។ គម្រោងនេះគឺជាការឆ្លើយតបនឹងការកើនឡើងនៃចំនួនករណីទាក់ទងនឹងការជួញដូរមនុស្សដោយរបៀបណា?

ការរៀបការដោយបង្ខំ មិនត្រូវកំណត់ន័យច្បាស់លាស់ទេ នៅក្នុងច្បាប់អន្តរជាតិទេ។ ឯកសារមួយនៅក្នុងចំណោមឯកសារមួយចំនួនតូចទាក់ទងនឹងបញ្ហានេះគឺ អនុសញ្ញាឆ្នាំ១៩៥៦ ដែលចាត់ថ្នាក់ការអនុវត្តនៃការរៀបអាពាហ៍ពិពាហ៍ ដែលក្នុងនោះ ស្ត្រីគ្មានសិទ្ធិដើម្បីរៀបការជាមួយនឹងភាគីទីបី ត្រូវបានចាត់ទុកថាស្រដៀងគ្នានឹងទាសភាព។ ក្រោយមក ការអនុវត្តបែបនេះត្រូវបានបញ្ចូលជាទម្រង់នៃការកេងប្រវ័ញ្ចនៅក្នុងនិយមន័យអន្តរជាតិនៃអំពើជួញដូរមនុស្ស ដែលបង្កើតឱ្យមានទំនាក់ទំនងរវាងបាតុភូតទាំងពីរ។

ទំនាក់ទំនងទាំងនេះឃើញកាន់តែច្បាស់នៅក្នុងការរៀបការដោយបង្ខំ ដែលជាផ្នែកមួយនៃលំហូរជួញដូរទៅរៀបការតាមរយះទេសន្តរប្រវេសន៍។ ដោយសារតែគោលនយោបាយឱ្យមានកូនតែមួយអស់រយះពេលជាង៣០ឆ្នាំ បូករួមជាមួយនឹងការនិយមចង់បានកូនប្រុសច្រើនជាងចំនួនស្ត្រី។ បញ្ហានេះ នាំឱ្យមានការជ្រើសរើសស្ត្រីពីប្រទេសក្រៅ រួមទាំងប្រទេសកម្ពុជាដើម្បីបំពេញតម្រូវការនៃការខ្វះស្ត្រី។

នៅក្នុងប្រទេសកម្ពុជា ការខ្វះការអប់រំនិងការខ្វះការងារធ្វើ ប្រាក់ខែទាប នេះហើយទើបត្រូវបង្ខំចិត្តទៅរកការងារធ្វើ នៅក្រៅប្រទេស។ ប៉ុន្តែប្រព័ន្ធទេសន្តរប្រវេសន៍ការងារស្របច្បាប់នៅក្នុងតំបន់មិនសូវបើកចំហរ ជាពិសេសសម្រាប់ស្ត្រី គឺមានន័យថា ទេសន្តរប្រវសន៍ដើម្បីរៀបការគឺជាជម្រើសមួយសម្រាប់នារីខ្មែរជាច្រើនដែលស្វែងរកការងារនៅក្រៅប្រទេស។

ប្រទេសកម្ពុជានិងប្រទេសចិនហាមឃាត់ការរៀបអាពាហ៍ពិពាហ៍តាមរយះមេខ្យល់ ហើយបានដាក់ចេញនូវគោលនយោបាយមួយចំនួនដើម្បីរារាំងស្ត្រីខែ្មរមិនឱ្យរៀបការជាមួយនឹងបុរសចិន តាមរយះមេខ្យល់។ ក្រៅពីបញ្ហាទាក់ទងនឹងសិទ្ធិ គោលនយោបាយទាំងនេះបានធ្វើឱ្យស្ត្រីដែលមានបំណងធ្វើទេសន្តរប្រវេសន៍ ងាកទៅរកសេវាពីភ្នាក់ងារខុសច្បាប់ដែលរកស៊ីដោយគ្មានតម្លាភាពនិងគ្មានការទទួលខុសត្រូវ។ ទោះបីជាភស្តុតាងក្រៅផ្លូវការបង្ហាញថា ស្ត្រីខ្មែរមួយចំនួនដែលបានរៀបការដោយបង្ខំនៅក្នុងប្រទេសចិន ហាក់បីដូចជាមានភាពសប្បាយរីករាយក៏ដោយ ការសិក្សាស្រាវជ្រាវខាងលើបានចងក្រងចំណុចអវិជ្ជមាននៃការមិនបានត្រួតពិនិត្យដិតដល់ចំពោះមេខ្យល់។

ស្ត្រីខ្មែរដែលត្រូវបានសម្ភាសន៍គឺត្រូវបានមេខ្យល់បោកប្រាស់និងបង្ខិតបង្ខំឱ្យរៀបការ តាមកម្រិតខុសៗគ្នា។ ស្ត្រីខ្លះគិតថាពួកគាត់មកប្រទេសចិនដើម្បីធ្វើការងារ ប៉ុន្តែក្រោយមកដឹងថា ពួកគាត់ត្រូវរៀបការទៅ   វិញ។ ស្ត្រីខ្លះទៀតត្រូវបានគេប្រាប់ថា ពួកគាត់ត្រូវតែរៀបការ មុននឹងអាចរកការងារធ្វើបាននៅក្នុងប្រទេសចិន ប៉ុន្តែតាមពិត ការរៀបការជាមួយនឹងជនជាតិចិនមិនអាចផ្តល់សិទ្ធិឱ្យធ្វើការងារបានភ្លាមទេនៅក្នុងប្រទេសចិនឡើយ គឺត្រូវរងចាំយ៉ាងហោចណាស់ក៏ ៥ ឆ្នាំឡើងទៅដែរ។ លើសពីនេះទៅទៀត ស្ថានភាពនៃការរៀបការបង្ហាញថា មានភាពខុសគ្នាពីអ្វីដែលបានពិភាក្សាគ្នាពីដំបូង។

ការដកហូតលិខិតឆ្លងដែន ការបង្អត់អាហារ ការហាមឃាត់ការទាក់ទងនិងការផ្លាស់ទី រួមនឹងការគម្រាមឱ្យសងការចំណាយថ្លៃធ្វើដំណើរ គឺជាកត្តាបង្ខំឱ្យស្ត្រីខ្មែរត្រូវតែរៀបការ។ កត្តាទាំងនេះរួមជាមួយនឹងស្ថានភាពទិដ្ឋាការដែលចូលទៅប្រទេសចិនក្នុងឋានៈជាអ្នកទេសចរណ៍ ធ្វើឱ្យស្ត្រីគ្មានជម្រើសណាក្រៅពីរៀបការដើម្បីបានស្នាក់នៅរយះពេលយូរនៅក្នុងប្រទេសចិន។

នាងចាន់ធីបានរៀបរាប់ពីបទពិសោធន៍របស់នាងក្រោយពីត្រឡប់មកដល់ប្រទេសកម្ពុជា។ «មីងម្នាក់បានប្រាប់ខ្ញុំថា បុរសទាំងនោះមកជ្រើសរើសប្រពន្ធ។ ខ្ញុំមានការភ្ញាក់ផ្អើល យើងមិនអាចរកការងារធ្វើទេ»។

*ចាន់ធី មិនមែនជាឈ្មោះពិតទេ

IOMX បានធ្វើយុទ្ធនាការអប់រំផ្សព្វផ្សាយតាមរយះឈុតវីឌីអូ នៅក្នុងប្រទេសកម្ពុជា ដោយជំរុញឱ្យស្រ្តីក្មេងៗស្វែងរកព័ត៌មាន មុនពេលសម្រេចចិត្តធ្វើទេសន្តរប្រវេសន៍។

Cambodian women left trapped after being tricked into marrying men overseas

Confiscated passports, withheld food, restricted communication and freedom of movement, and threats of having to repay travel costs served to coerce women into marriages.

By Sebastian Boll, Regional Research Specialist at UN-ACT

Chanthy’s* family in rural Cambodia was struggling financially. The money from the farm simply wasn’t sufficient anymore. She herself had moved to Phnom Penh for work, but the income was not great either. Then, one day, she received a phone call from her mother. “My mother said, ‘our neighbors went [to China for marriage] and have sent large amounts of money back home, and working in Phnom Penh you can only earn US$100 to support the family. It is not enough,’ ” she recalled. This marked the starting point in a cycle of deception, coercion, abuse – and, ultimately, forced marriage.

Chanthy’s story is one of many captured and analyzed for a research report on forced marriages between Cambodia and China (PDF) that UN-ACT published with partners in 2016. The project was a response to the growing number of identified cases between the two countries. But what is a forced marriage, and how does it relate to human trafficking?

Forced marriage is not well defined in international law. One of few available sources is a convention from 1956, which classifies institutions or practices whereby women, ‘without the right to refuse, [are] promised or given in marriage on payment of a consideration in money or in kind’ to a third party as similar to slavery. Such institutions and practices were later included as forms of exploitation in the international definition of human trafficking, hence establishing clear linkages between the two phenomena. 

These linkages have become even more apparent in recent manifestations of forced marriages, as part of patterns of commercial marriage migration. China, as a result of more than 30 years of one-child policy coupled with gender selection due to son preferences, houses some 30-40 million more men in marriageable age than women, with significant numbers of brides being recruited abroad including from Cambodia.

In Cambodia, a lack of educational and professional prospects, low wages, and high pressures to contribute financially to family life leaves many young women with few options but to look for work outside their home country. However, labour migration systems in the region are restrictive, especially for women, meaning marriage migration has become a viable alternative for many seeking opportunities abroad.  

Both Cambodia and China prohibit international marriage brokerage and have introduced various other policies to prevent Cambodian women from marrying Chinese men. Aside from raising important rights-related questions, this has pushed potential migrants to enlist the services of irregular agents operating without transparency and accountability. Whilst anecdotal evidence suggests that some, perhaps many, of the Cambodian women living in arranged marriages in China appear content, the above research documented the downsides of the lack of oversight over brokers.

The Cambodian women interviewed were both deceived and coerced into marriages by agents to varying degrees. Some thought that they had come to China for the purpose of work and only later found out that they had to get married instead. Others were told that they needed to get married in order to find work in China, although marriage doesn’t grant employment opportunities for a minimum of 5 years. Further, the conditions of marriage proved to be significantly different to what was originally discussed.

Confiscated passports, withheld food, restricted communication and freedom of movement, and threats of having to repay travel costs to China all served to coerce women into marriages. These factors were compounded by their visa status, in that respondents had entered China on tourist visas and only found out after their arrival that marriage was the only opportunity for longer-term stays.

Chanthy described her own experiences upon arrival as follows: “We were put up in a house. Two days later, men came to look at us and took away some of the women. I asked my peer what was going on. She informed me that men came to pick up their wives. I was surprised since I had come here to find work. The friend told me that unless we had a husband, we would not find work.”

*not her real name

Sebastian Boll is the Regional Research Specialist at UN-ACT overseeing the project’s research and knowledge-sharing portfolio. He can be contacted at [email protected]

IOM X has launched a video campaign in Cambodia encouraging young women to seek information before making the decision to migrate.