What has been the impact of Covid-19 on migrant workers in Goa? Survey Findings and Analysis

We did a rapid assesssement of the challenges migrant workers are facing due to COVID19, in partnership with the Goa Humanitarian Helpline and other CSOs.

Migrant workers in Goa have been hugely impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown. With the full closure of the lucrative tourism industry and a pause on construction projects in the state, many lost their livelihoods overnight. Workers from all over India and Nepal found themselves seeking food and cash relief as they tried to decide whether to attempt to return home or wait out the lockdown in Goa. The situation for migrant workers remains extremely challenging as the state begins to open up and restart in a 'new normal'.

Tandem Research, alongside the Goa Humanitarian Helpline and other CSOs, undertook a survey to understand the challenges facing migrant workers. This report is based on the findings of this survey and outlines the problems migrants faced around accessing relief measures, receiving information from the state government and their plans for returning home or staying in Goa. We then put forward policy recommendations for the short, mid and long-term, underpinned by the need to rebuild Goa as an environmentally and socially sustainable state.

Authors

Zothan Mawii

Zothan Mawii is Research Fellow at Tandem Research. Her current work focuses on the impact of digital technologies on labour markets in the global south and the intersection between gender and emerging technologies. She has been studying the impact of digital labour platforms in emerging economies, conducting extensive field work in India, South Africa, and Myanmar. Key to her research are questions around changing employment relations and the nature of work, worker well-being, and worker rights in technology mediated work. Her research interests include digital labour, online social movements, the care economy, feminist perspectives on technology, and internet rights. She has previously worked on issues around internet shutdowns and online violence against women. She holds a MA in Digital Culture and Society from King's College London and a BA (Hons) in English from St. Stephen's College, DU.

Iona Eckstein

Iona Eckstein works on the Future of Work programme at Tandem Research. Her work focuses on how platforms economies are impacting labour markets and the experience of gig workers in India. She is also interested in feminist perspectives on the future of work and how women can benefit from technological advances. She has conducted fieldwork in Nepal, Tanzania and Denmark and has a B.Sc in Sociology from the University of Bristol, and an M.Sc in Global Development from the University of Copenhagen.