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Who are the homeworkers?

The majority of homeworkers are women, who take up this form of employment as a way of earning an income to support themselves and their families. Homework is seen as a way of combining the unpaid work of family care, with earning a paid income. While there are positive aspects to homebased work, such as flexible hours which allow women to carry out their homebased work around their family responsibilities, women often turn to homebased work due to lack of necessary qualifications and formal training, absence of child care support, social and cultural constraints and lack of alternatives. Families need cash income for their survival. Loss in formal employment and reduced returns from agriculture often result in men migrating to urban centres, leaving behind women and children. With home-based work being the only alternative available to the poorest communities, it is not confined only to women but also involves children, particularly girls.

In general, people who find it hard to find employment due to various reasons such as cultural or legal restrictions, discrimination and lack of qualifications wind up doing home-based work. Some men and boys are included in this category. Those with disability also often choose to work from home due to inaccessible transport systems and work places.


What is home-based work?

What are the different types of home-based worker?

What's the importance of homebased work?

Who are the homeworkers?

Why are homeworkers called the 'invisible' workforce?

How has globalisation affected homebased work?