Rampant violation of labour laws by Indonesian recruitment agencies

Each year, thousands of Indonesian women migrate to the Gulf region to work as domestic workers, where they are often subject to harsh working conditions. Recruitment agencies play a pivotal role in helping these (often low skilled) women find a job, but pervasively violate labour laws.

Hivos has developed a scorecard in which 21 recruitment agencies are assessed. The scorecard determines to what extent agencies operate according to Indonesian and international human rights law. Scores are based on a survey conducted among migrant domestic workers (891 respondents).

The categories on the horizontal shaft are based on these laws. Click on the categories for further information, including an explanation of what the law prescribes.

Any score above 0 indicates a violation of the law and thus a violation of the rights of Indonesian migrant domestic workers. As the scorecard shows, the violation of the law by the agencies of Indonesian law is rampant.

 

Average non-compliance rate of 30%

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  • 0 -0
  • 1 -25
  • 26 -50
  • 51 -75
  • 76 -100
  • Assessment of non-compliance of the Indonesian law, scored from 0 to 100 in percentages, in which 0 indicates no reported violation of the Indonesian law, 10 means 10% of the respondents reported violation of the law and 100 means all respondents reported violation of the Indonesian law.
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  • INFORMATION PRE-DEPARTURE
  • PREPARATION AT TRAINING HOUSE
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  • INFORMATION PRE-DEPARTURE
  • PREPARATION AT TRAINING HOUSE
  • Average agencies

  • 10
  • 27
  • 30
  • 25
  • 20
  • 19
  • 31
  • 43
  • 14
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A call for more supervision of recruitment agencies

As shown in the scorecard, all agencies violate the Indonesian labor migration and human rights law in almost all categories. There are strong differences among agencies, some violate the law more heavily than others. This calls for better government regulation, implementation and monitoring of recruitment agencies.

Scores per agency

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  • 0 -0
  • 1 -25
  • 26 -50
  • 51 -75
  • 76 -100
  • Assessment of non-compliance of the Indonesian law, scored from 0 to 100 in percentages, in which 0 indicates no reported violation of the Indonesian law, 10 means 10% of the respondents reported violation of the law and 100 means all respondents reported violation of the Indonesian law.
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  • INFORMATION PRE-DEPARTURE
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  • INFORMATION PRE-DEPARTURE
  • PREPARATION AT TRAINING HOUSE
  • A

  • 8 out of 8 are going for the first time

  • 100
  • 88
  • 100
  • 100
  • 100
  • N.A.
  • N.A.
  • N.A.
  • 8 out of 8 are going for the first time

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    8 out of 8 are going for the first time

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  • B

  • 6 out of 31 are going for the first time

  • 45
  • 33
  • 45
  • 17
  • 27
  • 30
  • 47
  • 17
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    6 out of 31 are going for the first time

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  • C

  • 0 out of 10 are going for the first time

  • 48
  • 43
  • 40
  • 19
  • 20
  • 34
  • 40
  • 20
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    0 out of 10 are going for the first time

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  • D

  • 2 out of 55 are going for the first time

  • 28
  • 26
  • 17
  • 18
  • 10
  • 28
  • 46
  • 7
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    2 out of 55 are going for the first time

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  • E

  • 0 out of 9 are going for the first time

  • 27
  • 17
  • 22
  • 16
  • 17
  • 40
  • 32
  • 14
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    0 out of 9 are going for the first time

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  • F

  • 0 out of 12 are going for the first time

  • 32
  • 18
  • 29
  • 36
  • 25
  • 35
  • 36
  • 23
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    0 out of 12 are going for the first time

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  • G

  • 0 out of 7 are going for the first time

  • 31
  • 24
  • 36
  • 24
  • 8
  • 27
  • 50
  • 17
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    0 out of 7 are going for the first time

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  • H

  • 0 out of 17 are going for the first time

  • 27
  • 25
  • 6
  • 12
  • 24
  • 34
  • 28
  • 15
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    0 out of 17 are going for the first time

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  • I

  • 9 out of 19 are going for the first time

  • 23
  • 22
  • 13
  • 25
  • 5
  • 29
  • 49
  • 12
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    9 out of 19 are going for the first time

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  • J

  • 0 out of 10 are going for the first time

  • 26
  • 15
  • 10
  • 23
  • 15
  • 26
  • 44
  • 10
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    0 out of 10 are going for the first time

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  • K

  • 1 out of 8 are going for the first time

  • 13
  • 33
  • 44
  • 20
  • 27
  • 43
  • 43
  • 39
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    1 out of 8 are going for the first time

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  • L

  • 0 out of 7 are going for the first time

  • 29
  • 21
  • 14
  • 16
  • 7
  • 31
  • 52
  • 14
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    0 out of 7 are going for the first time

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  • M

  • 2 out of 7 are going for the first time

  • 52
  • 50
  • 43
  • 21
  • 58
  • 24
  • 32
  • 5
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    2 out of 7 are going for the first time

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  • N

  • 8 out of 14 are going for the first time

  • 11
  • 15
  • 0
  • 33
  • 11
  • 21
  • 33
  • 2
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    8 out of 14 are going for the first time

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  • O

  • 0 out of 7 are going for the first time

  • 20
  • 26
  • 0
  • 16
  • 7
  • 31
  • 46
  • 4
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    0 out of 7 are going for the first time

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  • P

  • 0 out of 8 are going for the first time

  • 48
  • 35
  • 13
  • 10
  • 13
  • 35
  • 26
  • 19
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    0 out of 8 are going for the first time

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  • Q

  • 3 out of 7 are going for the first time

  • 48
  • 43
  • 43
  • 28
  • 27
  • 20
  • 50
  • 0
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    3 out of 7 are going for the first time

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  • R

  • 1 out of 12 are going for the first time

  • 19
  • 22
  • 17
  • 12
  • 42
  • 33
  • 50
  • 17
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  • S

  • 0 out of 7 are going for the first time

  • 42
  • 36
  • 36
  • 16
  • 31
  • 37
  • 35
  • 29
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    0 out of 7 are going for the first time

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  • T

  • 0 out of 14 are going for the first time

  • 25
  • 26
  • 18
  • 24
  • 25
  • 26
  • 40
  • 9
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    0 out of 14 are going for the first time

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  • U

  • 2 out of 10 are going for the first time

  • 52
  • 30
  • 40
  • 21
  • 22
  • 30
  • 31
  • 22
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Methodology

This scorecard is based on data that came out of a survey that was conducted among 891 Indonesian women who are about to depart to the Gulf region to work as a domestic worker. The women were questioned right before departure at Jakarta International Airport. We only used the data of agencies that were represented by at least 7 respondents. This resulted in an analysis of 26 agencies, and data of a total of 216 respondents that was used as the basis for the analysis.

Each survey question assesses whether a human or labor migration right is violated or not. It is the role of recruitment agencies to prepare women for working abroad as a domestic worker. This includes providing sufficient information on safe migration and employment conditions such as their rights and obligations, a description of the work abroad including working hours and paid holidays, customs of the country where they will be working. Besides education on such topics, recruitment agencies also have to train these women in their future job as a domestic worker and provide them with the means to seek legal protection when they are abroad. The survey maps out requirements agencies legally have to comply with. Each negative answer thereby means that the recruitment agency violates the Indonesian labor and/or human rights law.

The survey is based on an assessment of laws on recruitment and employment of migrant (domestic) workers from an international migration and human rights perspective. The assessment has been compared to a legal-administrative analysis of national and international laws on recruitment of Migrant (Domestic) Workers. Purpose of the study was to come to a list of criteria to assess agencies. The survey can be found here

The following laws formed the basis for the survey questions:

  • Law No 39 of 2004 Placement and Protection of Indonesian Workers Overseas
  • International Convention On The Protection Of The Rights Of All Migrant Workers And Members Of Their Families
  • Law No 6 of 2012 on the Ratification of International Convention On The Protection Of The Rights Of All Migrant Workers And Members Of Their Families
  • Minister Regulation No 7 2005 on Standardization of Shelters for Indonesian Workers