1995/20. Violence against women migrant workers

The Commission on Human Rights,

Recalling that the Charter of the United Nations reaffirms faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person and in the equal rights of men and women,

Reaffirming the principles set forth in the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, adopted by the General Assembly in its resolution 34/180 of 18 December 1979,

Stressing that the promotion of the human rights of women constitutes an integral part of the human rights activities of the United Nations, as reaffirmed in the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action (A/CONF.157/23) adopted by the World Conference on Human Rights,

Welcoming the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development, held in Cairo from 5 to 13 September 1994, which called upon all countries to take full measures to eliminate all forms of exploitation, abuse, harassment and violence against women,

Noting the large numbers of women from developing countries and from some economies in transition who continue to venture forth to more affluent countries in search of a living for themselves and their families, as a consequence of poverty, unemployment and other socio-economic situations in their home countries, while acknowledging the primary duty of States to work for conditions that provide employment for their citizens,

Recognizing that it is for the sending countries to protect and promote the interests of their citizens who seek or receive employment in other countries, to provide them with appropriate training/education and to apprise them of their rights and obligations in the countries of employment,

Aware of the obligation of receiving or host countries to ensure the human rights and fundamental freedoms of all persons within their boundaries, including migrant workers, and in particular women migrant workers, who are doubly vulnerable because of their gender and their being foreigners,

Noting with concern the continuing reports of grave abuses and acts of violence committed against the persons of women migrant workers by some of their employers in some host countries,

Stressing that acts of violence directed against women impair or nullify the enjoyment by women of their human rights and fundamental freedoms,

Convinced of the need to eliminate all forms of discrimination against women and the need to protect them from gender-based violence,

1. Expresses grave concern at the plight of women migrant workers who become victims of physical, mental and sexual harassment and abuse;

2. Recognizes with appreciation the efforts exerted by some receiving countries to alleviate the negative situation of women migrant workers;

3. Recalls, in this context, General Assembly resolution 48/104 of 20 December 1993, in which the Assembly proclaimed the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women;

4. Welcomes measures to strengthen the human rights of women and the establishment of closer ties between the organs dealing with women's issues and rights in the United Nations, through a special programme of activities, as envisioned in the proposed revision to the medium-term plan for the period 1992-1997;

5. Invites States concerned, specifically the sending and receiving States of women migrant workers, to conduct regular consultations for the purpose of identifying problem areas in promoting and protecting the rights of women migrant workers and in ensuring health and social services for them, adopting specific measures to address those problems, setting up, as necessary, appropriate mechanisms to implement those measures, and, in general, creating conditions that foster greater harmony and tolerance between women migrant workers and the rest of the society in which they reside;

6. Calls upon the countries concerned to take appropriate measures to ensure that law-enforcement officials assist in guaranteeing the full protection of the rights of women migrant workers, consistent with international obligations of Member States;

7. Urges both sending and host countries to help ensure that women migrant workers are protected from unscrupulous recruitment practices and, if needed, by the adoption of legal measures;

8. Encourages Member States to consider signing and ratifying or acceding to the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families;

9. Invites trade unions to support the realization of the rights of women migrant workers by assisting them in organizing themselves so as to enable them better to assert their rights;

10. Calls upon relevant bodies and specialized agencies of the United Nations system, intergovernmental organizations and non-governmental organizations to inform the Secretary-General of the extent of the problem and to recommend further measures to achieve the purposes of the present resolution;

11. Requests treaty-monitoring bodies and non-governmental organizations concerned with violence against women to include, where appropriate, the situation of women migrant workers in their deliberations and findings and to supply relevant information to United Nations bodies and Governments;

12. Calls upon relevant specialized agencies of the United Nations system, intergovernmental bodies and non-governmental organizations concerned, in cooperation with both the sending and the host countries, to conduct seminars and training programmes on human rights instruments, particularly those pertaining to migrant workers;

13. Invites all States to adopt, with the support of relevant non-governmental organizations, appropriate measures to provide support services to women migrant workers who have become traumatized as a consequence of violation of their rights by, inter alia, unscrupulous employers and/or recruiters, to provide resources for their physical and psychological rehabilitation and to facilitate their return to their countries of origin;

14. Invites the World Summit for Social Development, the Fourth World Conference on Women: Action for Equality, Development and Peace and the Ninth United Nations Congress on the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders to consider including in their respective programmes of action the subject of the traffic in women and girls;

15. Invites the Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights on violence against women to continue to include among the urgent issues pertaining to her mandate the violence perpetrated against women migrant workers and to consider including her findings in her report to the Commission on Human Rights at its fifty-second session;

16. Decides to continue to consider the question at its fifty-second session under the agenda item entitled "Measures to improve the situation and ensure the human rights and dignity of all migrant workers".
42nd meeting
24 February 1995
[Adopted without a vote. See chap. XIII. E/CN.4/1995/176]


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