9793 9708 (AWatW Office)

9793 9062 (Vietnamese Workers)

9793 9150 (Chinese Workers)

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Our Activities

Outreach

to individuals and groups through a range of mechanisms including the promotion of our activities in ethnic media, visits to workplaces to deliver information kits in community languages, and opening up many activities to new participants. Our single biggest form of recruitment is our own members inviting others to be involved.

Individual support

through Information, referral, casework, assistance with understanding and completing documents. Includes evening telephone information and referral service every Tuesday evening until 8pm, in Chinese and Vietnamese.

Support groups

through leisure groups, English classes, locality-based groups, industry-based groups (especially clothing outworkers and aged care) and occasionally groups based around workers from one company.

Seminars and Information Sessions

through the support groups or at a branch level, although some are run for the entire network. Issues are identified by the women themselves. Rights at Work, Women's Health, Centrelink and tax issues for low income women, and parenting are popular topics.

 

 

 

Community Building Social Activities

to bring busy women together with their families, where they are together to build community, engage with Australian society, pass on information, discuss issues and develop leadership skills amongst those who assist in organising and running the program. For example, bus trips or fishing workshops.

 

 

 

 

Leadership Development and Training

through informal training, formal training, mentoring, and creating opportunities and experiences. For example, outworker leaders identified and developed in English classes are now being invited to come together and give feedback on proposals for OH&S project.

Branch Development

through establishing leadership structures among the target group and planning processes by the target group. The branches are named for the suburb where most members and activities congregate but includes surrounding areas. The six branch areas are Auburn, Bankstown, Blacktown, Cabramatta, Hurstville and Inner West (Campsie and Marrickville). We also want to develop branches in northern Sydney. Through these branches, we also engage women in local issues and help them to connect with their local community.

Work and family policy issues for migrant women:

combine monitoring issues for our members, monitoring areas of policy development, facilitating understanding of policy environment and content for members, and facilitating Asian women workers role in speaking out on those issues. Through branches and small groups we consult and inform across the organisation. We give staff tools to do this with each of their groups. We have established action groups from among the target group to take these issues up with decision makers, facilitate them having a voice.

Migrant Women Workers Forums:

We seek to hold these every three to four years if funding is available. Through these forums, we aim to bring women together for information and training, recognising they are not alone, building a common identity and identifying key issues they want to work on as a group. The September 2006 forum funded by NSW Office for Women was very successful, attended by 179 migrant women from 5 language groups, over 100 of whom were from our target group and the others supporters. In May 2010 we held a National Forum funded by the Federal Office for Women attended by over 300 women, 207 of them migrant women workers from precarious employment.

Action and Advocate Groups:

We invite leaders from groups to become involved in taking up particular issues the Forums or other processes have identified as key issues. They then work together to plan and undertake activities that will raise the profile of these issues to decision makers and the broader community. For example we had an Action Group which met regularly for 3 years and worked around industrial relations legislation, firstly raising concerns around the impacts of WorkChoices on migrant women worker and later lobbying in relation to the content of the Fair Work Bill. We also have an ongoing Outworker Advocates group.

Special Projects:

Taking up specific issues, for example previous Outworker Radio Program and current Outworker OH&S Outreach and Education projects.

Some of Our Major Achievements

  • Successfully lobbied for and participated as a lead partner in the implementation of NSW Behind the Label Outworker Strategy 2002-2005
  • Published and launched "Cries from the Workplace" - stories of 20 migrant women workers from Sydney 2007
  • Influenced the shape of the Fair Work Act and modern awards to better respond to the needs of and issues for migrant women workers 2008-2009
  • Ran more than 35 support groups for migrant women workers in 2008-2009 financial year, 15 of which have become ongoing support groups.
  • Brought 207 migrant women workers and another 100 supporters together for a national forum for migrant women in precarious employment entitled "Women Raising Our Voices" 2010

 

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