This study focuses on the critical role of employers in recruiting and managing the employment relationship within the current normative framework of Lebanon.
Over 250,000 migrant women are employed by private households in Lebanon to carry out household tasks such as cleaning, cooking, and caring for children and the elderly. A standard contract for Domestic Workers sets out the basic parameters for the employment relationship, which creates a legal link between the “the worker” and the “employer”. In Lebanon, the employer wields a great degree of power in determining the living and working conditions of a migrant domestic worker (MDW). The inequities are created in part by a normative framework in Lebanon heavily dominated by a sponsorship system, known as kafala. Under kafala a worker’s legal status is linked to one employer and the worker cannot unilaterally exit the employment relationship. The domestic workers’ exclusion from labour legislation and social protection exacerbates the power imbalance.
This platform is part of the Axis 1 "Strengthening the capacities of equality actors" of the Priority Solidarity Fund "Women for the future in the Mediterranean" funded by the French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs and led by the European Institute of the Mediterranean, in the framework of the project “Developing Women's Empowerment” labelled by the Union for the Mediterranean.