New Article: Lim, Transnational Migration of Filipino Caregivers to Israel

Lim, Anna. “Networked Mobility in the ‘Migration Industry’: Transnational Migration of Filipino Caregivers to Israel.” Asian Women 31.2 (2015): 85-118.

 

URL: http://www.dbpia.co.kr/Journal/ArticleDetail/NODE06362705

 

Abstract

This article examines how labor migration is facilitated and shaped within the neoliberal economy system, focusing on the case of Filipino migration to Israel. For Filipino women who seek to find economic opportunities abroad but lack skills, Israel has emerged as one of the most popular destinations since the mid-1990s, since it is a destination in which they are allowed to work as paid caregivers. In Israel, the caregiver sector occupies the greatest part of the overseas labor market, while providing local senior citizens with live-in caregivers at a cheap cost. In investigating the migration flow of Filipino caregivers to Israel, I draw a special attention to the informal operations of intermediary networks and their roles in initiating and sustaining Filipino migrant flow to Israel. In this article, the intermediary networks involve all those who engage in the migration process such as agents/sub-agents, family, friends, and the friends of their friends. In the context of Israel, where a relatively higher wage is assured for foreign caregivers yet where entry conditions require an exorbitant placement fee, the migration is operated through the complementary roles of a wide range of formal and informal intermediaries. Significantly, such privatization of overseas labor recruitment, characterized by a binding system and an overseas recruitment scheme, contributes to producing power to private agencies, enabling them to impose excessive placement fees on the migrants and control the employment. It is within this context that Filipino women are channeled into the Israel labor market, shaping the current migration flow.

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