*Working Group 1 was facilitated by Marcela de la Peña from Le Monde Selon Les Femmes, Belgium
The first workshop was about improving migrant policies. Most women struggle to cope with obstacles, such as policies, found in the political and economic structures: labour migration, labour rights, respect, inclusion. The Romanian labour market is dominated by strong segregation. Women used to work mostly in the textiles industry, now they also work in other industries, e.g. communications. Women have migrated from Romania to Spain, searching for jobs in services. Ms DORA ANADELA AGUIRRE HIDALGO, National Assembly of Ecuador and representing the migrant population in Europe emphasized Spain’s example of an emigrant permissive country. It offers to employees social protection, social aids, several allowances and the minimum wage. At the same time, it has improved policies so that migrants have better life conditions and the possibility to learn and work legally. NGOs play a major role, as they try to inform migrant women about their rights and put pressure on the state to act more on the employment security. Among other participants at this workshop we mention Iris Alexe, Soros Foundation Romania, SANDRA RAMOS, Movement of Working and Unemployed Women, Nicaragua, NATALIA RIBAS-MATEOS, Universidad de A Coruña, Spain, Daniela Banari, Romanian Trade union and Regina Barendt, CCC Europe.
The second workshop debated mainly on South-East Asia, a region that has all kind of migrant problems. Also in this territory arises the phenomenon of circular migration: immigrants should be able to come, go and come back again, with few restrictions. As the EU has an increased deficit of domestic workers and the labour demand is high, many women leave their homes for relocating in Europe. According to a recent study, 75% of migrants in EU’s services sector are Asians. JUNYA LEK YIMPRASERT, Thai Labour Campaign, Finland/Thailand, FILOMENTINA MONGAYA HØGSHOLM, Babaylan Europe and Babaylan Denmark / Danish Gender Platform, Denmark, Jackie Pollock from MAP Foundation, Thailand were among the participants at this workshop.
Monica Sonia, participant at the Plenary introduction and discussion, in the first day of the Conference