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Specific support needed for disadvantaged labourers

Update: August, 01/2017 - 16:32
Labourers with disabilities learn to make clothes at an apparel vocational training centre. — VNA/VNS Photo Hồ Cầu
Viet Nam News

HCM CITY — Policies that aim to support disadvantaged labourers should cater to each type of labourer in society, experts have said.

Some 13 million disadvantaged labourers were recorded in the country until the end of last year, accounting for 25 per cent of the total labour force, according to the Institute of Workers and Trade Union.

Out of those 13 million, some 4.2 million are labourers with disabilities, 6.5 million are poor and one million are migrant workers. Some 180,000 have HIV/AIDS and 190,000 others are drug addicts and sex workers.

Eighty per cent of disadvantaged labourers in Việt Nam reside in rural areas, with low education levels and no vocational training. Some 21.8 per cent are illiterate and 40 per cent have never had a job, Dr Vũ Minh Tiến, vice director of the union, said.

“Without stable jobs, income and business capital, their lives are approaching a dead-end,” he said at a conference on policy recommendations to ensure the livelihoods of disadvantaged labourers in the 2015-30 period and beyond on Monday in HCM City.

Despite the State’s loan support policies, there were no markets for the products produced by these disadvantaged labourers, hence they got stuck in the vicious circle of debt, unemployment and poverty, Võ Văn Tấn, chairman of the labour federation of the city’s Cần Giờ District, said.

The migrant workers were having trouble with household registration policies, lecturer Vũ Văn Hiệu from Tôn Đức Thắng University said.

“The household registration book should not be used as a tool to classify citizens, discriminating against migrant workers and preventing them from approaching job opportunities and basic social services,” he said.

The vulnerability of disadvantaged labourers should be the central point of policies that aim to support and sustain their livelihoods, according to experts.

Occupations provided for these labourers should be recoverable from occurrences, not dependent on outside support, and able to yield sustainable productivity and long-term benefits, they said. — VNS

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