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Beyond the Shared Tears of Bangsamoro Women Migrant Workers: From Greener Pastures to Greater Accountability

A supposed transitory response to temporary shortages and surpluses of labor, labor migration has paved the way for the evolution of landmark laws, strong advocacies, institutional infrastructures, and social norms supporting womens mobility. All of these have encouraged young and single Filipino Muslim women to become migrant workers in other countries, especially in West Asia. But their collective narrative is still plagued with stories of shared tears—of discrimination, exploitation, and abuse. As destination countries become places of vulnerabilities for women migrant workers (WMWs), they also become places of opportunities that move their narrative from the search for greener pastures to that of greater accountability in the processes of recruitment, release, tracking (welfare monitoring and assistance), and reintegration. The recent institution of the Bangsamoro provides opportunities for these women, including the identification of the root causes of their shared tears and the increase of the accountability among stakeholders in order for them to respond appropriately to the growing needs of the women and their families. These opportunites should lead toward ensuring that WMWs are accorded the right to information, protection and support, due process, and reparation whether they decide to leave or stay home for good.


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