In the Southeast Asia region, working poor women account for 30 percent of vulnerable and unpaid family workers. The traditional held value in society has put women of the lower economic strata namely the working-poor in a vulnerable position where they are stigmatized for the lacking of skills and capacity.
In the urban area, working-poor women work as domestic workers performing work traditionally assigned to mothers or wives. In the service sector, women are employed to perform work that is low skilled and pays lesser like serving customers or cleaning jobs. The outsourcing of industrial process also depends on working-poor women employed in home based industries. Meanwhile in rural area, many women are forced to become unpaid family workers whose work is in assisting their spouse, and plantation casual workers, to meet the target/quota at work.
The work performed by working-poor women is considered as a work traditionally assigned to women. Therefore, in the economic reality, the work is devalued and the workers are excluded from the legal framework. The article, using case studies of organizing working-poor women, explores some strategies to encourage working-poor women to become agents of change of their situation and livelihood.