News : Article

Sri Lanka: Commission recommends measures to empower women in the informal sector

Graphic: Woman displays woven baskets

The report prepared by the Commission identifies the challenges faced by women in informal economic work, such as agriculture and cottage industries.

The Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka has published a report that sets out a range of practical steps to empower women in Sri Lanka's informal sector.

The report - "A world without her? Empowering women in the informal sector – looks at the challenges faced by women engaged in informal economic work, such as agriculture and cottage industries.

The report was compiled following a round table discussion on International Women's Day (8 March) hosted by the Commission and involving a wide range of stakeholders, including representatives from the Commission's ten regional offices.

The women reported difficulties in obtaining loans for their work in the informal sector, difficulties in accessing credit facilities introduced by the government, ignorance in credit management and the lack of a state mechanism to regulate the micro-lending institutions.

Other common challenges include:

  • Anomalies in the system of distributing resources made available by the Government to the rural sector and self-employed workers
  • Lack of support and avenues for women market their products
  • High prices for raw materials, which are often scarce
  • Non-availability of adequate child-minding facilities.

The report includes eight key recommendations, directed to government authorities and private sector credit institutions, to better support women in the informal sector.

The Commission will monitor the implementation of the recommendations and, where necessary, investigate complaints where the rights of women have been infringed.

The full report is available from the Commission's website.

Date: 15 March 2018

Source: Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka


Image credits

  1. Woman displays woven baskets - Dhammika Heenpella, Flickr; http://bit.ly/2puhxDt