June 29, 2017

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Greener pastures not always sunnier for migrant workers

Most of us love our homes, for it is here that love begins. Few wish to leave their home or family, as the warmth of this environment is one of life’s greatest gifts. Even among those who, for whatever reason, must venture away, home is rarely far from the heart or mind.
Those who move from their native lands often do so due to an unsafe environment or a lack of employment prospects. A move to greener pastures is undertaken with hopes of promising opportunities. While challenges may be unavoidable, a fair and humane working environment is a reasonable expectation for internal or foreign migrants.
Some migrant workers encounter hostility in their new environments. Many work for low pay and with uncertain futures, but have no option of returning home due to the limited opportunities there.
Recent studies have estimated the global population of internal and external migrants as between 750 million and one billion, with those numbers continuing to grow. Some economies are largely dependent on low-cost migrant labour to keep their industries competitive in the marketplace.
The movement of people from less-developed areas to business hubs is a worldwide trend. Within this context, female-headed households in many less-developed countries are twice as likely to be reliant on remittances as the main household income source as those with a male head.
Therefore, ensuring safety and security for both internal and external migrant workers is vital. Their families in deprived areas depend on their remittances as a major income source. The sunshine of opportunity may make certain pastures greener and brighter, but it is important that those moving toward them are not kept out of the light.

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