Many female migrant workers have to work 10-12 hours per day, live in highly cramped lodgings, have no spare time for themselves and receive no training to improve their skills.– Photo kinhtedothi.vn
HÀ NỘI – They have to work 10-12 hours per day, live in highly cramped lodgings, have no spare time for themselves and receive no training to improve their skills.
The sorry plight of female migrant workers was highlighted at a seminar held recently by the Hà Nội Women’s Union.
A study done by the Research Centre for Family Support and Community Development (CFSCD) found female migrant workers in Phúc Xá Ward in Ba Đình District, and in Thịnh Liệt and Định Công wards in Hoàng Mai District had to live in narrow, boarding houses that lacked sufficient light and toilets.
They face a lot of difficulties in registering as temporary residents and have little or no access to social insurance and health insurance, a CFSCD report said.
It said more than 80 per cent of the women spoken to said they were engaged in manual labour and saw no prospects of finding other, more stable employment.
CFSCD Director Lê Thị Thủy said the lives of female migrant workers were extremely hard. They had to send money to their families, parents, or repay debts from when they were still at school, so their income did not meet even minimum requirements.
“Many of them do not have health insurance, so whenever they are ill, they are not taken care of and must spend too much on treatment fees. They fall into poverty easily,” Thủy said.
Since the beginning of last year, the Hà Nội Women’s Union and CFSCD have jointly implemented a project to improve the living conditions of female migrant workers in Hà Nội and enhance their empowerment.
The project established three female migrant worker clubs in the three wards mentioned above. The clubs held monthly meetings to help each other overcome obstacles in their lives.
Club members met with local authorities to with requests for specific assistance, like having part-time work to augment incomes, loans at preferential interest rates to do business, support to buy health insurance and permission for their children to study in public schools located in areas where they are registered as temporary residents.
Vũ Thị Kim Thơi, head of the club in Thịnh Liệt Ward, said they had 50 members who receive training and assistance in trading, healthcare and law towards improving awareness and creating fresh momentum in their lives.
So far, the three clubs have attracted nearly 100 female migrant workers. For the upcoming Tết (Lunar New Year) festival, they presented 20 poor female migrant workers with gifts worth VNĐ8 million (US$350). – VNS