Best wishes for the New Year from the Federation of Homeworkers Worldwide. Recently Federation members HWW and READ Foundation met in Tamil Nadu, South India to discuss how work is progressing to support women workers in the textile and garment industry.
READ Foundation are working in the rural area of Pudukkottai. Many young women and girls from this area are recruited to work in the large factories and mills around Tiripur.
International competition for cheap prices and fast production is leading to major exploitation and human rights abuses in the industry. Young women, living on-site in hostels, are subject to forced overtime, low wages, poor living conditions and the denial of basic freedoms.
READ is working in the rural villages to organise these women, help them access social security schemes and educate them about their rights as workers. This is challenging work, as the women can only be contacted if they leave the factories or come home for rare holidays, such as for Diwali. READ is also pursuing legal cases for over 100 women who have not received their proper pay from their employer.