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Palestinian Migrant Workers

Questions to Consider While Researching Topic One…

  • What is my country’s stance on this issue?
    • Who are our allies & what has our policy been?
  • What are the ramifications on any resolution made for my country?
    • Make sure not to contradict your country’s position with your rhetoric.
  • What are the facts in my country?
    • Do we have a large labor force from other countries?
      • Are there good unions?
      • What roles can unions play?
    • Do we have problems with jobs and employment in your country?
      • What are the current statistics on employment?
  • Lastly, what do we hope to gain as a country from this committee session?
    • Do we want to expand allies?
    • How much does the issue concern us?
    • How can we better ourselves internationally form this meeting?
      • This could be as simple as active & genuine assistance or could be as drastic as attempting to shoot down
        any policies that would hurt that whom you represent.
      • Who are you representing?

International Labor Organization (ILO)

The ILO is a specialized agency of the United Nations, with headquarters in Geneva. It was created in 1919 by the Versailles Treaty and affiliated with the
League of Nations until 1945, when it voted to sever ties with the League. In 1946 it became an agency of the United Nations. Although not a member of the
League, the United States joined the ILO in 1934. Through international action the ILO seeks to improve labor conditions, promote a higher standard of living,
and further social justice. Promotion of international accord on such matters as regulation of hours of work, provision of adequate wages, protection of workers
against occupational disease and injury, and protection of women and children and those who work outside their own countries accounts for much of its activities.
The ILO consists of a general conference of representatives of the members (4 from each member state), a governing body of 56 people (28 representing
governments, 14 employers, and 14 labor), and an International Labor Office controlled by the governing body. The ILO is financed by contributions from
member states; 175 countries belong to the organization. Protesting the political policies of the organization, the United States withdrew from the ILO between
1977 and 1980. The ILO received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1969. The organization puts out a number of publications containing statistics on labor and advice
for workers.

Migrant Workers

The presence of migrant workers has become widespread in many developed economies, often constituting 6%-8% of the population in major Western economies.
A prevalent case, though not the only one, is the case of workers from less developed economies. These typically enter low wage/low-skill occupations, which are
at the bottom of the social status ladder. Sometimes, but not always, these workers become immigrants and stay in the host country. As the gap between rich and
poor economies persists and in certain cases widens, as mobility becomes easier and cheaper, and as distaste for low-skill occupations in rich economies grows,
this phenomenon is likely to continue and even increase.

A Brief Background

The West Bank and the Gaza Strip—the constituents of the Palestinian economy—have been occupied by Israel since June 1967. In 1968 Palestinian workers
started to flow to employment in Israel and the labor market turned out to be the major link between the two economies. The links between the labor markets of
the two economies, and in particular the flow of migrant workers, reached their height in the 1980s. These links underwent significant changes, and in particular a
substantial decline in the flow of workers, beginning in December 1987 when a popular uprising (“intifada”) broke out against the occupation. The uprising led to
strikes, curfews and new security regulations such as occasional closures of the territories. In 1993, following peace negotiations, the Oslo accords were signed,
offering the Palestinians autonomous control over parts of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. In September 2000 a second uprising broke out with even greater
ensuing turbulence.

Important Sources

  1. Migrant Worker Patterns of Self Selection: The case of Palestinian Workers in Israel.
  2. The Political Dynamics of a Segmented Labor Market… Rosenhek, Zeev.
  3. Palestinian Labor Flows to the Israeli Economy: A Finished Story?
     Farsakh, Leila.
  4. The Oslo Peace Accords

In addition to these there are a number of other news related sources that will be of service to you, especially the BBC web address and the United Nations web
address.   I did not give you the cite for other resolutions pertaining to this topic, it would behoove you to go into the UN web site and look at these so you can
site these in committee if necessary.   Remember that I am also now a source for you, I can be reached at the following email address, please contact me so that I
may better guide you if at all necessary. Good luck and I am looking forward to working with you all.

Dan Crisp
Chair of ILO

Post Script:   If you are at all interested in achieving the Best Delegate Award make sure to email me so that I can get the parameters of the award out to you.  
Thanks again.

Workers in Israel: A Contemporary Form of Slavery

Report from a joint mission to Israel investigating the situation of migrant workers

Yashiv, Eran. Migrant Workers' Patterns of Self-Selection: The Case of Palestinian Workers in Israel, Discussion Paper No. 12-2002 October 2002

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