FRC member, Nadine El-Dekmak published a new short paper on the Migration Conference 2023 Selected Papers entitled “International standards of migrant domestic workers and the kafala system in Lebanon”.
In this publication, Nadine explores the kafala (sponsorship) system adopted in Lebanon, under which migrant domestic workers are employed, to demonstrate how this system could violate human rights of the workers. This paper is available here.
The kafala system is the legal basis of the work relationship between migrant domestic workers (MDWs) and their employers in many countries including Lebanon. This system links the worker's residency to their employer, creating exploitative working conditions for MDWs. This paper investigates if the kafala system complies with international standards that regulate the situation of migrant workers. It hypothesizes that it facilitates domestic servitude and violates human rights of the worker, notably the rights to freedom of movement, fair renumeration, and freedom of choice of employment.