News and statements on labour migration

  1. The long journey of justice for Indonesian migrant workers

    04 October 2011

    As the second largest sending country, some 700.000 documented Indonesian migrant workers leave the country for work abroad, primarily in East and South East Asia as well as the Middle East. Of these, 78 per cent work as domestic workers.

  2. ILO launches a photo essay on migrant workers - “The long road home: Journeys of Indonesian migrant workers”

    26 September 2011

    Growing numbers of Indonesian women and men continue to opt for overseas labour migration as the best way of securing an adequate income for their families and escaping poverty. However, the social and economic costs of migration to the workers and their families are many, but are often poorly understood and documented.

  3. The story of Munti: Tortured to death in Malaysia

    15 September 2011

    Suparmo, 47 years old, still cannot forget his wife’s condition. Her teeth were broken. Her backbone was fractured. She had bruises and stab wounds on her face and body. His wife’s name was Munti. She was only 36 years old and was in a coma. “I couldn’t believe that she could still be alive with all those severe injuries,” Suparmo recalled. “She had been severely tortured by her employers.”

  4. The story of Umi Saodah: Tortured and trapped in war-torn Palestine

    15 September 2011

    “I’m still angry and cannot forget what they have done to me,” Umi Saodah, a 34-year-old, recalled. It’s still crystal clear in her mind how four family members of her employer tortured her two years ago. “They showed no mercy. If they were living here in Indonesia, I would retaliate,” she said.

  5. The story of Halimah: A father’s persisting regrets

    15 September 2011

    Kohar, 49 years old and a resident of Cianjur, West Java, has five children: four daughters and a son. His wife died in 1999 and his two eldest daughters have worked in Saudi Arabia. When his third daughter, Halimah, 27 years of age, asked his permission to follow in her sisters’ footsteps working in Saudi Arabia as a migrant domestic worker, he could not say no.

  6. The story of Elli Anita: Resilience in the face of adversity

    15 September 2011

    Elli Anita is the third daughter of a family who joined the government-sponsored resettlement program from Jember in East Java to Bandar Lampung, Sumatra, when she was 18 years old. She holds an elementary school level leaving certificate and was expected to work on the family farm. However, after listening to the stories of fellow villagers, she was keen to work overseas as a domestic worker and see other countries.

  7. The story of Siti Tarwiyah: Beaten to death in Saudi Arabia; blood money is all that remains of a mother’s love

    15 September 2011

    “I’m still so traumatized. I can not forget my late wife. Her body was covered in wounds as a result of regular caning,” recalled Hamid, the husband of Siti Tarwiyah who died in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, three years ago. Her body was bruised everywhere because members of the employers family used to smash her up against walls. She was only 32 years old when she died.

  8. The story of Ceriyati: Escaping abuse in Malaysia

    15 September 2011

    Ceriyati Binti Dapin, a 37-year-old mother of a handicapped son, had no other choice but to become a migrant domestic worker in order to supplement the income of her husband Ridwan, who worked as an ojek driver in the Central Java town of Brebes. Despite the long recruitment process and delays in getting employment in Malaysia, she had a strong desire to help her husband cover her son’s regular medical costs.

  9. The story of Cassina: Trapped in war-torn Iraq

    15 September 2011

    Like most of her peers in Subang, West Java, Cassina had a strong desire to lift her family out of poverty as it had a debilitating effect on them since her marriage in 1996. Her husband’s daily income as an ojek driver was inadequate to cover their daily needs and pay for their ten year-old son’s monthly school tuition fees. Having heard the success stories about her fellow villagers working in Malaysia and Middle East, she decided she wanted to work in Abu Dhabi.

  10. Study on public attitudes to migrant workers

    20 July 2011