Promoting Fair Recruitment of migrant workers

The improvement of fair recruitment practices is an important element to reduce labour migration costs. The ILO counts with the following legal and policy frameworks and guidelines to protect migrant workers and improve recruitment practices:
  • ILO’s Conventions 88, 96, 97, 143, 181 and 189 include specific provisions guiding tripartite constituents towards the fair recruitment of migrant workers.
  • ILO’s 2015 Fair Recruitment Initiative which has the objective of fostering fair recruitment practices, preventing human trafficking and reducing the costs of labour migration;
  • The 2016 General Principles and Operational Guidelines for Fair Recruitment which are intended to cover the recruitment of all workers, including migrant workers, whether directly recruited by employers or through intermediaries. They apply to recruitment within or across national borders, as well as to recruitment through temporary work agencies, and cover all sectors of the economy.
  • The 2018 ILO/World Bank Guidelines on calculating Recruitment Costs may assist those aiming to produce the statistics needed to calculate SDG 10.7.1 indicator: “Recruitment cost borne by employee as a proportion of monthly income earned in country of destination”. They have been prepared in consultation with several national statistical offices and other UN agencies to develop a recruitment cost indicator that can be monitored as part of the SDG agenda, drawing on the experience and lessons learned from the surveys jointly conducted by the World Bank/ KNOMAD and ILO. This work is expected to contribute to identifying the size of, and setting a global target to reduce, recruitment costs globally. The Guidelines include discussions on objectives and uses of the indicator, definition, considerations on data collection items, programs and methods, as well as consideration on relevant tabulations .
  • ILO’s 2018 new definition on recruitment Fees and related costs formulated and adopted by the Tripartite Meeting of Experts on defining Recruitment Fees and Related Costs which confirmed that no fees or related costs should be borne by the workers.
The ILO works in the region through two global projects that include work in some countries of the African region:
  • Through the project “Integrated Programme on Fair Recruitment” (FAIR I) –the ILO inaugurated two "Migrant Spaces" at UGTT Tunis and Sousse for foreign migrant workers in Tunisia, as part of the establishment of the UGTT network of regional focal points for foreign migrant workers in Tunisia.
  • Within the implementation of the “Global Action to Improve the Recruitment Framework of Labour Migration” (REFRAME) project, the ILO is supporting the launch of the Migrant Recruitment Monitor with unions in Kenya:
The ILO is also providing support to Tunisia in the review of legislation governing the regulation of recruitment agencies.