Migrant Rights Statistics

Low Wage Workers

90%

of the 1000+ low-income workers interviewed in Qatar were not in possession of their passports.

8,000+ complaints

about delayed wages and passport confiscation were received by Kuwait's labor disputes offices in 2014.

3,740+

migrants in Saudi Arabia filed complaints about employers in 2014. Issues included nonpayment of salaries and refusal to renew residency permits.

4,072

migrant workers in Oman filed labor complaints in 2013.

2,792+

complaints were received by India's mission in Qatar. 3,558 complaints were received in 2013.

Closing Statement

Registered complaints represent only a portion of the abuses low-income migrant workers experience. While some cases are investigated by Gulf authorities, typically workers can only rely on the aid of their embassies or consulates to successfully resolve labor disputes. If migrants are able to access their often under-resourced representatives, the legal system often fails to proportionally penalize abusive employers and restricts resolutions to compensation or a release from the job contract - which generally does not permit workers to change jobs, but instead forces them to return home. Though specific laws and practices vary across the GCC, the persistence of the Kafala (sponsorship) system and exclusive legal systems enable rampant labor and rights violations against millions of low-income migrant workers.

More Statistics

Advancing the rights of migrant workers throughout the Middle East