The need for Social Protection for HBWs has been particularly highlighted during the COVID – 19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdowns. In the early days of the pandemic, HBWs experienced job losses on a massive scale as employers in global and domestic supply chains withdrew work orders and wound down operations without paying due compensations. For own account home-based workers customers disappeared and work dried up, leaving them without income.
Social Protection is a Human Right and a Labour Right enshrined in Human Rights Standards and in International Labour Standards. It is a set of policies and programmes which, if designed well, can prevent and reduce the impact of risks to the security of workers’ incomes throughout the course of their lives.
Social Protection systems usually exclude and / or provide limited protection to home-based workers. Therefore, they often find themselves excluded from these laws, policies and programmes on Social Protection as they are not recognized as a distinct category of workers. These are some of the issues faced by HBWs in accessing their right to social protection: