Dignified work

CARE International advocates for safe workplace conditions for women, promoting the rights of women workers around the world.

The importance of dignified work

Women face numerous barriers to achieving equality in the workplace and in the home. For domestic workers, those in the garment industry, or those working in the informal economy, women often face unequal working conditions, lack of access to social support mechanisms, and many experience sexual abuse and harassment. Unequal and unsafe working conditions can also bar women from achieving financial equality.

CARE International has promoted industry-wide change for women in the garment industry by partnering with women workers and their organizations and advocating for better public policies and business practices that respect the rights of workers. This includes strategies to address workplace violence, including a sexual harassment prevention for garment factories and coordinated global advocacy in support of the ILO Convention on Violence and Harassment (190).

CARE International’s long-term support of the domestic worker movement in Latin America includes joint advocacy in support of ILO Convention 190 and an ILO Convention on Domestic Workers (189), as well as seeking changes to how society values care and domestic work.

A group of five young women smile and laugh together while standing in a field. They are all wearing brightly colored dresses and head scarves.

What is CARE International doing to help women achieve dignified work?

CARE International works with women to ensure they have a workplace that provides adequate wages and safe working conditions, where they are protected from sexual and gender-based violence. We have been working in the garment industry in Cambodia since 1998 to improve occupational health and safety through the creation of industry standards, and to reduce workplace harassment to protect the primarily young female migrant garment workers. Made by Women works with national and regional partners from trade unions and other civil society organizations and with garment factories and brands, to promote the rights of female garment workers. The program has enabled 167,000 women garment factory workers to claim their rights or reduce the risk of sexual harassment in the workplace, and a further 4.1 million stand to benefit from improved legal practices CARE International and our partners have influenced.

Additionally, 77 factories have worked with CARE International to make changes to their policies, systems and workplace cultures to be more responsive to the rights of women workers, resulting in more than 154,000 workers gaining more dignified working conditions.

A shot from above showing several women working on sewing machines at desks. Play video

Learn more about how women garment workers have been leading their communities with the support of CARE International.