Human Rights Challenges for Migrant Workers: a Case of Returning Kenyans From the Gulf Region.
Mburu, Alice N
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The continued uproar in the media about Kenyan migrant workers mistreatments and human rights violations in the Gulf region has led to a lot being desired as to what can be a lasting solution, since with increased unemployment Kenyans will continue seeking employment outside the country. The main aim of this study is to identify the human rights challenges faced by returning Kenyan migrant workers from the Gulf region. The focus is on regular migrants who leave the country procedurally. This is line with the International Labour Organization (ILO) which notes clearly that migrant workers have rights too which is well embedded in its security arm and recognized internationally. The objectives of the study included to establish the human rights challenges, to evaluate the causes, assess the effects and investigate viable interventions to address the challenges and therefore enhance human right services for returning Kenyan migrant workers. The main research question addressed in this study is what Human Right challenges do return Kenyan migrant workers face in the Gulf region? Primary data collection was done through semi-structured interviews and in addition, secondary data from administrative reports were consulted. Data analysis through content analysis, summaries, categorizations and deductions was conducted. The interviews were completed at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) in Nairobi targeting flights from the Middle East and Gulf region. The target was to interview 30 migrants who were arriving without their passports but using Emergency Travel Documents (ETDs) as a pointer of them being violated migrant workers. In the light of the Corona outbreak, as a limitation it was only possible to conduct seven interviews due to the challenges associated. Secondly, information was collected from the Kenya National Commission for Human Rights (KNCHR) offices in Nairobi through reports and key stakeholder interviews. The findings indicate that indeed returning Kenyan migrant workers did face human right violations in the Gulf region and they do not seek and access Human right services. The recommendations included sensitization on human right services and awareness creation in order for the migrant workers to be empowered in seeking the services. The study contributes to the existing body of knowledge and theory in this area, helps to improve future policies and contributes to better migration practice. Suggestion for further research can be done in areas to assess the effectiveness and practicability of Bilateral Labour Agreements (BLAs). Also, analysis of coordination of various service providers involved in Kenyan migrant workers and how communication among them is open, transparent and shared among them to the dignity of these workers in Gulf region.
University of Nairobi
SubjectHuman Rights Challenges
RightsAttribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States
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