In 2018, representatives of HBWs from five regions met in Stockholm, Sweden along with WIEGO. They unanimously decided to take concrete steps to set up a global network of HBWs. An Interim International Working Group with one representative and an alternate from each region was established to steer the process over a two-year period that would culminate with the launch of HomeNet International in 2020. They agreed to an extensive consultative process to ensure home-based workers and through their membership-based organizations fully participate in making decisions about the proposed network. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the launch and physical Congress that was originally planned for 2020 was postponed. Despite the situation, HomeNet International held it’s first Congress virtually and was officially launched on February 23 and 24, 2021.
HomeNet International is a global network of membership-based workers’ organizations representing thousands of home-based workers (HBWs) around the world. In February 2021, 36 HBW organizations from 20 countries became the first affiliate members to join the organization, representing more than 600 000 HBWs.
Key Functions of HNI are:
To raise visibility and gain recognition of home-based workers as workers globally.
To build and provide solidarity amongst HBWs around common issues at the global level.
To work with regional groups to develop effective mechanisms to improve the livelihoods and working conditions of home-based workers.
To use the power of a global voice to influence governments and employers at global, regional, national and local levels
To work towards ratification and implementation of ILO Convention 177 and policies for home-based workers, including implementation of ILO Recommendation 204
The vision of HNI " is for greater visibility and recognition of home-based workers, and a strong, united and representative voice on global platforms, where they effectively engage and challenge those who have power over their working lives, such as governments and employers "
Democratic, accountable membership-based organizations of home-based workers including trade unions, cooperatives, associations, self-help groups and, home-based worker producer owned companies or
Democratic, accountable membership-based federations, networks or alliances of home-based workers, or
Multi-sector membership-based organizations where home-based workers are a part, provided that the affiliation to HNI is based only on the number of home-based workers in the affiliate and that representation in HNI is from the HBW section only.
All the above potential MBO affiliates (a to c above) will be required to also meet the following criteria:
Either be registered as a membership-based organization of home- based workers or function as such and fulfill the conditions at (ii) to (viii) below
Work at local and/or national / country level
Have a written constitution / rules
Have evidence of a governing body elected by the home-based worker members
Have regular financial reports
Be independent of political and / or religious bodies as well as employers.
Have a minimum number of fifty (50) HBW members or the minimum number specified by the regional bodies to which they are affiliated, whichever is more
Become a member of the relevant regional body where it exists