Equality and discrimination in Asia and the Pacific

Abused Indonesian domestic worker ©Steve McCurry

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Promoting equality and eliminating discrimination at work are essential to achieving decent work in Asia and the Pacific. Extending labour protection and applying principles of non-discrimination and equality in workplaces therefore plays a vital role. Some groups are at particular risk of labour exploitation, these include: domestic workers;women; migrants; human trafficking victims; ethnic minorities and indigenous peoples; people living with HIV-AIDS; and people living with disabilities. More than 60 per cent of workers in Asia and the Pacific are characterized as 'vulnerable', meaning they are own-account workers, unpaid family workers, or in casual, part-time or temporary employment . Gender is an important issue because women make up a disproportionally large share of these vulnerable workers, reflecting their limited opportunities in gainful work and their dual roles as income earners and family care givers.


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