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Global review site will highlight abusive recruitment practices

A new web-based platform has been launched to help protect migrant workers from exploitative employment practices.

Global review site will highlight abusive recruitment practices
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Recruitment Advisor is a recruitment and employment review website that provides workers with information about recruitment agencies and workers’ rights when they are looking for a job abroad.  

More than 10,000 recruitment agencies in Nepal, the Philippines, Indonesia, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan and South Korea are listed on the website, which is currently available in English, Indonesian, Nepali and Tagalog. 

Workers can comment on their experiences with an agency and award a rating from one to five stars for costs, pre-departure orientation sessions, the contract of employment and conditions in the destination country.

The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) developed the platform with support from the ILO Fair Recruitment Initiative, launched in 2015 to help prevent human trafficking and protect workers from abusive and fraudulent practices during the recruitment and placement process.  

Governments of the target countries provided the lists of licensed agencies. Ultimately, those which follow a fair recruitment process based on the International Labour Organization’s (ILO) General Principles and Operational Guidelines for Fair Recruitment will be promoted on the platform.  

Recruitment Advisor will also provide feedback to governments on agencies’ working practices. This information could be used to complement more traditional monitoring systems as migrant workers are particularly vulnerable to abuse during recruitment, according to the ITUC.  

Its general secretary, Sharan Burrow, said: “Unscrupulous recruitment agencies take advantage of the lack of law enforcement by governments or because workers are simply not aware of their rights. It’s time to put power back into workers’ hands to rate the recruitment agencies and show whether their promises of jobs and wages are delivered.

“An organised workforce cannot be enslaved, but when there is a governance failure and no law enforcement, then slavery can flourish. Together we will stop unscrupulous recruitment practices, we will eliminate slavery in the supply chains and we will end modern slavery.” 

Alix Nasri, technical specialist at the ILO, added: “This platform can help migrant workers make critical choices as the time of planning their journey to work in a foreign country. We know that when a worker is recruited fairly, the risk of ending in forced labour is drastically reduced. 

“We strongly encourage workers to share their experiences so others can learn from them. A critical mass of review is needed for the platform to be really helpful for migrants.” 

 

 

Keeley Downey is acting deputy editor of IOSH Magazine. She is a former editor of Biofuels International, Bioenergy Insight and Tank Cleaning Magazine

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