No. 04: Gender Concerns in South African Migration Policy


This paper draws attention to the need for a gender analysis of the South African government’s proposed new policy on international migration, by identifying a number of areas of implicit gender discrimination. Such “discrimination by default” is of more than academic relevance, having important implications for national and regional development. Research undertaken by the Southern African Migration Project indicates a growing “feminization” of migration to South Africa from the Southern African region, as well as gender-specific motives and patterns of migration. If migration is to be effectively managed, such realities must be taken into account. The paper concludes by advocating a development-centred, household strategies approach, both in understanding international migration to South Africa and in the further development and implementation of legislation. The paper was written by Dr Belinda Dodson, a research associate of SAMP. The opinions expressed are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect those of SAMP, its staff or its funders

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