National Policy Seminar on Amendments, Adoption and Implementation of Bonded Labor System Abolition Act 1992
As part of SPARC’s celebrating the UCD, it held a major Conference on the issue of bonded labor in Karachi on Nov 20.
Members of the Sindh Assembly, government functionaries, civil society organizations, lawyers, stakeholders of bonded labour, children from various schools and media professionals attended the full-day Conference in a large number.
Sindh Law Minister, Secretary Labor Balochistan, Members of Sindh Assembly Irum Azeem Farouqi, Sharmila Farooqui, and Dr Seema Zia, SPARC Board member Anees Jillani, advocate M Ali Shah, Chairman Pakistan Fisherfolk Forum, Civil Society activist Noor Mohammad Bajeer, Adam Malik and Iqbal Detho of SCUS, Zulfiqar Shah of Piler, Shahjahan Baloch of Actionaid, Kashif Bajeer of SPARC, Lawyer Barrister Zamir Ghumro, M Farooq, General Secretary Sindh Bricklin Owners Association, Saboor Ghayoor, head of Centre for Labour Advocacy, Civil society activist Adam Malik spoke at the Conference.
Various issues relating to bonded labor in various sectors, including agriculture, fisheries, bricklin sector and weaving industries, were discussed and many recommendations were made, including the following:
- The Bonded Labor System (Abolition) Act 1992 needs to be updated and fully implemented.
- National Policy & Plan of Action should be adopted as Provincial Plan of Action.
- Provincial Steering Committees should be formed on bonded labor to oversee implementation of law and policy.
- Registration of bricklin should be made mandatory.
- Issuance of social security cards should be made mandatory for all bonded laborers.
- Labor laws should be extended to the agricultural sector, including right to association.
- A high level provincial commission should be formed in Sindh and Punjab for undertaking a plan for structural changes, particularly land reforms.
- Bonded labor fund proceeds should be urgently disbursed.
- Notification of minimum wages should be issued immediately and implemented in totality.
- Sindh Bonded Labour Department should be restored, which existed prior to the 2013 Elections.