BD workers in Maldives at added risk of Covid-19: HRW
Bangladeshi migrant workers in different sectors in Maldives are at added risk of Covid-19, Human Rights Watch (HRW) statement said on Saturday.
It said about 100,000 migrant workers in Maldives, including many Bangladeshis, are at added risk of Covid-19.
However, the HRW urged the authorities concerned to ensure their access to healthcare.
Maldives' health authorities reported that there were five active cases of Covid-19 - two of them were tourists and one a Maldivian returning from UK.
"But the Maldives is facing another big challenge. The other two cases of Covid-19 reported were migrant workers. There are about 100,000 migrant workers in the Maldives, mostly from Bangladesh, making up roughly 25 percent of the islands' total population," HRW said.
This population is vulnerable to seeing a much larger number of cases because they live in congested shared quarters and do work that does not make it possible to practice strict social distancing, it added.
HRW said although employers in the Maldives are legally obligated to provide all migrant workers with health insurance, coverage is often minimal and many are not informed they have insurance at all.
The Maldives did not ratify the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families-they should do so immediately and abide by its provisions in the meantime, the HRW said.