Women's groups at the Asean People's Forum (APF) Saturday urged Asean to ensure that the rights of women migrant workers be protected under the laws of its member states.
Women migrant workers make up more than half the number of migrant workers in Southeast Asia, but a lot of women, especially domestic workers, face discrimination, exploitation and many forms of sexual abuse, the groups said.
Speaking at a gathering of women workers and activists from Asean countries, Dede Elah, a 35-year-old Muslim woman from Indonesia, said that many Muslim women from her country, including herself, who went to work as domestic workers in other countries faced sexual harassment by employers. Elah told how she had had to run away from her male employer to seek help from the Indonesian Embassy in Saudi Arabia.
- The Nation/ Asia News Network