MFA Policy Brief: Social Protection for Low Skilled Migrant Workers and their Families

The Asian Inter-Parliamentary Caucus has focused on social protection for the last few years, as this is a very important issue for migrant workers in Asia. Social security is based on national systems, often explicitly excluding non-nationals from coverage. In addition, many migrant workers (especially migrant women) are employed in the informal sector, which traditionally falls outside of social security system coverage.

We would like to share with you MFA’s most recent policy brief on social protection: “Social Protection for Low Skilled Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families”. It provides an overview of social protection, discussions on transformative social protection and the right to social protection. The policy brief offers a critique on the discourse of social protection for low skilled migrant workers. It also outlines a set of recommendations to address social protection issues for low skilled migrant workers.

Excerpts from the Policy Brief:

“Low skilled migrant workers experience a significant gap between their entitlement to social protection and being able to access, exercise and enforce their right. As identified in the following discussion highlighting some issues from Migrant Forum in Asia’s experience in practice. Social protection policies are only successful when migrant workers recognise their rights and have the ability, capacity and position to claim their rights; it’s not enough that the rights just be bestowed. Social security systems will fail to overcome the poverty trap if accessibility is denied and meanwhile the migrant worker situation deteriorates.”

Download the policy brief here