Ensuring Decent Work and Reducing Vulnerabilities for Women and Children in the Context of Labour Migration in Southeast Asia (PROTECT)

Photo: UN Women/Younghwa Choi


“Ensuring Decent Work and Reducing Vulnerabilities for Women and Children in the Context of Labour Migration in Southeast Asia (PROTECT, Protection of the Rights of Women and Children in Labour Migration)” is a three-year project (2024-2026) implemented by the ILO, UN Women, UNICEF and UNODC.

The PROTECT project will promote decent work, while reducing the vulnerabilities of women and children in labour migration. This includes preventing and responding to violence against women and children, human trafficking and migrant smuggling.

By tackling legal, policy, and institutional gaps and barriers, the project seeks to ensure that women migrant workers and children are better protected. This will include the protection of fundamental principles and rights at work, as well as having safer, regulated, and orderly migration options by addressing violence, exploitation, forced labour, and trafficking.

Additionally, the project will enhance national and regional capacities and mechanisms for policy implementation, service provision and prevention efforts, to ensure that laws and policies are implemented effectively. It also focuses on empowering women migrant workers and children to access services and recognize and reduce their vulnerability to abuse and exploitation.

Implementation countries

The Protect project covers Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand. UN Women implements activities primarily in Cambodia and Thailand.

Programme Objectives

The Overall objective of the PROTECT project is to protect the rights of women migrant workers and migrant children in Southeast Asia.

To strengthen national legislation, policies and regional frameworks for the protection of women migrant workers, children and other vulnerable groups in line with international standards.

To improve national and regional prevention and protection mechanisms to reduce rights’ violations against migrant women, children, and other vulnerable groups, including victims of trafficking and smuggled migrants.

To increase the access of at-risk groups, women migrant workers and children to information, social and legal services, counselling, and association to prevent abuse, exploitation, harassment, violence, and trafficking in human beings.