This narrative presents a brief history of a network thriving to bring justice for migrant workers and members of their families. The Lawyers Beyond Borders (LBB) is a transnational network established by Migrant Forum in Asia (MFA) in 2011 in response to the crucial need for more fair and adequate legal redress mechanisms for migrant workers and members of their families, and increased coordination among lawyers, legal aid practitioners, civil society and State and non-State actors in countries of origin and destination. Members of the network focus on migrant workers’ rights violation cases in Asia, initially and particularly West Asia, and then later on expanded to include other migration corridors of the continent.
LBB is rooted and has visibly emerged from a long and steady history of efforts by grassroots groups, self-organized migrant workers, their families and individual advocates – the frontliners – who work on the ground and collaborate to achieve the realization of the rights of all migrant workers and members of their families. The initiatives of the frontliners to resolve migrants’ rights violations and social issues were possible even with humble resources. LBB provides strategic opportunities for the grassroots to push for greater concerted actions on building and strengthening capacities of network members and partners on provision of legal assistance and rights advocacy, bridging access to justice for migrant workers and members of their families, and empowering the latter through the rule of law.
This narrative illustrates how LBB has evolved through the years but it also ¬shows how it is part of a vast continuum of the advocacy of the MFA network for the promotion and protection of the rights of migrant workers and members of their families in Asia, and the potential influence the network can bring beyond the region.
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