Created by a coalition of non-governmental organizations and independent activists, the 24/7 campaign aims at shedding light on the plight of migrant domestic workers in Lebanon and other Arab countries.
Even though the Lebanese Government approved last year a unified contract for all migrant domestic workers in Lebanon, and in spite of several human rights agreements signed by Lebanon, as well as the Lebanese constitution which supposedly protects human beings in Lebanon from slavery and slavery-like conditions, employers of migrant domestic workers continue to treat their employees as slaves.
Perhaps the most significant example would be the fact that these employees work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They are given a few hours of sleep, but even then they are on stand-by as employers reserve the right to wake them at any moment of the night for any reason imaginable.
What To Do?
First of all, we ask you to treat migrant workers, refugees, and other people who are “different”, with respect.
But in the course of this event, we ask you to:
- Take a minute and think about what you just read, whether you are Lebanese or not, living in Lebanon or not.
- If you are sad, outraged, angered, or moved, contact the organizers. (Contact info below)
- If you have a platform to post (notably a blog or a Twitter account), send organizers the link so that they add you to their database of participants.
- Add the 24/7 badge to your blog.
- Then from April 24 till May 1, you can join the “Twogging” campaign. You can write, draw, shout and sing your opinion of racism, modern-day slavery, labor rights, the universality of human rights, in Arabic and English. Send a link to email@example.com so that organizers can publicize your posts on Facebook and social networks. They will also be aggregating all blogs for the week.
- Check out the other activities organized in the 24/7 campaign.
- Spread the word, send it to all those whom you think would be interested in participating.
If you’re a tweep, blogger or Facebooker, here are some ideas our member Nadine Moawad, co-initiator of the “Twogging” campaign, had for blog posts, so that they are not all the same:
- Interview a migrant worker. Ask him/her about their journey here and their work here.
- Interview a migrant worker on camera. Post his/her interview on YouTube.
- Analyze the problem with migrant labor from a political or social perspective. Focus on either the gender aspect, the class struggle, or our inherent racism, to cite a few examples.
- Talk about the situation in your country in particular… What is it like for Sudanese workers in Egypt? Egyptian workers in Lebanon? Sri Lankan women in Dubai? Nepalese women in Jordan?
- Propose solutions. Write up brainstorming posts where you think of campaigns, projects, events, programs, organizations that can work on ending the injustice.
- Elaborate on the feminist analysis of migrant worker rights: household work as unpaid work, gender dynamics in the household, violence from women against other women, domestic violence & violence against domestic workers, sexual assault on migrant women, trafficking of migrant women, violence against women within the migrant communities, and other examples.
- Celebrate the culture of a non-Arab country from which many migrate to Arab states. I can think of Ethiopia, Sri Lanka, Nepal, and the Philippines (but that might be just from a Lebanese experience). Post a tribute by raising your friends’ and followers’ awareness about the richness of these cultures, histories, languages, and music.
For more information:
You can also contact the organizers by email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Category: Migrant Rights