Mexico’s Ministry of Labour and Social Security (STPS) has expressed its interest and commitment to align its operations with the International Organization for Migration’s International Recruitment Integrity System (IRIS), to improve the recruitment system in Mexico.
This follows officials from the Ministry meeting with IOM this week (16/05) to discuss ethical recruitment in the country.
IRIS is a social compliance system designed to promote international ethical recruitment for companies, governments and workers. The goal of IRIS is to transform the international recruitment industry so that it is fair to workers, recruiters and employers. Through IRIS, the STPS and its agencies, as well as recruitment agencies in Mexico, may adhere to the “employer pays” principle to encourage an ethical process throughout the recruitment, for the benefit of migrant workers and all actors involved.
Unethical recruitment is a global phenomenon found in all economic and occupational sectors, most commonly linked with the recruitment of lower skilled workers where the prevailing business model is based on a “worker pays” modality.
In Mexico, individuals in search of work use the services of irregular and abusive labour intermediaries who charge large amounts of money to procure them a job. Due to all these unfair practices, workers frequently incur in debts to pay the agent. Irregular intermediaries are in contact with unethical employers, who do not provide workers with dignified working conditions. Thus, workers can potentially become victims of abuse, exploitation and trafficking.
As stated by the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, it is necessary to disseminate, strengthen and improve the legal and organizational requirements of the recruitment agencies to make their operations more transparent. This poses challenges both for those businesses that are willing to comply with the requirements, and for the institutions that decide to support them.