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Indonesia: IDWF Open Letter to Indonesian President Joko Widodo to adopt Domestic Workers Bill and Ratify C189

Indonesia: IDWF Open Letter to Indonesian President Joko Widodo to adopt Domestic Workers Bill and Ratify C189

by IDWFED published Feb 17, 2015 04:11 PM
In solidarity support to domestic workers in Indonesia, IDWF issued an open letter today to Indonesian President Joko Widodo to demand for protection on domestic workers' rights.
Feb 18, 2015 (Universal / UTC0)
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February 17, 2015

Ir. H. Joko Widodo
Republic of Indonesia

Your Excellency,

Give Rights to Domestic Workers
- Adopt the Bills of Domestic Workers Rights and Ratify C189

The International Domestic Workers Federation, representing 56 domestic workers trade unions and other organizations worldwide, expresses its protest and indignant to the Indonesian government for failing to give rights and legal protection to its millions of domestic workers.

Indonesia is home to some 16 million domestic workers with 10 million working aboard and 6 million working inside the country. In the absence of any legal protective framework, they have been working without rights and any forms of protections ever since. Those who migrate to work in other countries often suffer double exploitation such as having to pay excessive agency fees and become indebted to the private employment agencies and recruiters which bring them to the countries they work.

To end this exploitation, domestic workers leaders since 2004 have been submitting a domestic workers bill to the government for change. Voices calling for enactment and implementation of the Bill from domestic workers, trade unions and their allies have never ceased in the last 11 years. To our immense surprise and disappointment, on February 9, we learnt that the Indonesian People's Representative Council dropped the Bill on Domestic Workers Rights from the priority list of 2015 National Legislation Programme. Likewise, the Minister of Labour does not commit himself to promote the Bill as well as to ratify the ILO Convention 189 concerning Decent Work for Domestic Workers.

Sister Lita Anggraini, the coordinator of the the National Advocacy network of Domestic Workers (JALAPRT) – an affiliate of the IDWF, has been on indefinite hunger strike since February 16. With this strong action, she and her organization are sending a message of protest on the strongest-possible term to the government and once again, to remind you, your Excellency on the overall JALA PRT’s demands to protect all domestic workers who have been contributing to the national economy of the country since long.

The IDWF with its members around the world strongly supports JALAPRT to struggle for legal protection of the millions of domestic workers which are:

1. To pass the Bill on Domestic Workers Rights and
2. To ratify the ILO Convention 189 on Decent Work for Domestic Workers, without delay and conditions.

Domestic workers are workers and should be treated like all other workers. It is extremely unfortunate that in your country extreme action such as indefinite hunger strike has to take place to make domestic workers voice heard. We salute to Sister Anggraini for her bold action involving huge personal sacrifice. We will continue to spread our message worldwide and provide her and JALAPRT all the possible support until the demands are met.

We look forward to hearing your favourable response.

Yours sincerely,
Elizabeth Tang
General Secretary

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