More young women at work: Report

Kathmandu, May 15:

Majority of working young women employed in sectors like woolen carpet industry, commercial shops and cabin/dance restaurants have been found of age group 16 to 25 years.

An International Labour Organisation (ILO) study report on ‘women workers in woolen carpet industry, commercial shops and cabin/dance restaurants,’ has revealed that almost 62 per cent women workers in these sectors are of age group 16 to 25 years. This is followed by age group of 26-35 years, which accounts for 29 per cent, while women workers aged above 35 years are only 6.5 per cent, according to the report.

Drawing an attention of the concerned stakeholders, the report has also revealed that these sectors employ about three per cent women workers aged below 15 years. In ethnic composition, majority of the workers or 53.2 per cent of them are Janajatis, while Brahmin/Chhetris are 23.2 per cent and Newars and Dalits account for 21.8 per cent and 1.8 per cent respectively.

The study, which was carried out among 449 women respondents-comprising 148 each from woolen carpet industry and commercial shops and 153 from cabin/dance restaurants, further reveals that the wor-kers get married at an early age of 18.2 years, which is less than the national average of 19.5 years.

Majority of the respondents were migrants. They have migrated due to financial problems or in search of better opportunities, according to the study. Contrary to the general belief, only 3.6 per cent had migrated to Kathmandu due to conflict. Over 91 per cent of the respondents reported having a family members also migrated.

The average monthly income of the women workers has been found at Rs 3,595 and their con spondents from three different sectors, the women workers in cabin/dance restaurants have found earning the highest at Rs 160.51 per day in average, while women working in woolen carpet industry are just making Rs 104.88 a day.

Of the total respondents, 89.5 per cent have stated that they have not received any appointment letter from their employers. “79.3 per cent of the women have reported that they did not have maternity related facilities in their workplace.”

Knowledge against child labour has been found high, as 74 per cent of the respondents have reported that they are aware of it or against employing children. “Majority of them are unaware about labour rights.”