Dhaka, Bangladesh, Mar 20, 2022 -- The hotline service for migrants under Prottasha project was handed over to the Wage Earners' Welfare Board (WEWB) to be merged with the Probashbondhu call centre.
A handover ceremony was held at the Ministry of Expatriates' Welfare and Overseas Employment on 20 March, read a press release.
According to the media release, this handover and merger will enable the WEWB to provide more comprehensive information support to both aspirant migrants and returnees on a 24-hour basis.
To provide information to aspirant and returned migrants and their families on safe migration and reintegration, the Prottasha project established a hotline service in 2019. Similarly, considering the contribution of expatriate workers and the importance of providing information to them, WEWB established the Probashbondhu call centre in 2017 to help expatriate workers and their families with information.
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During the handover ceremony, Expatriates' Welfare Minister Imran Ahmad said, "International migration and remittances have played an important role to the economy of Bangladesh. Migration continues to be an important area for Bangladesh as we have a large young population and two million new entrants into the labour market each year."
"Access to information is key to make informed decisions. The ministry has initiated many activities to provide information to migrants and aspirant migrants. The hotline is one such example," he added.
Speaking at the event, Dr Ahmed Munirus Saleheen, secretary of expatriates' welfare ministry, said, "The government has prioritised migration as a key area of national development. The 8th Five-year Plan includes a 10-point agenda to ensure a safe, orderly, and regular migration. Information dissemination is key to the success of this plan."
Md Hamidur Rahman, director general of WEWB, remarked, "We from the WEWB are tirelessly working for the welfare of our expatriate workers and their families. The Probashbondhu call centre is an initiative that provides migration related information to people. Merging Probashbondhu with the Prottasha hotline service will strengthen our capacity to provide better, more holistic information support."
Fathima Nusrath Ghazzali, officer in charge of IOM Bangladesh, said, "Migrants play a significant role in Bangladesh's national development with their remittances. However, there are some challenges, including irregular migration and human trafficking. Information plays a critical role in addressing these challenges."
She thanked the government and the delegation of the European Union for supporting the establishment of the Prottasha hotline service to provide critical information to migrants and their communities.
The Probashbondhu call centre provides all necessary information on migration and can be accessed via four telephone numbers. Anyone in Bangladesh can seek information by contacting the local number (08000102030) without any charge. Callers from home and abroad can also connect with the centre through the numbers (09610102030, 01794333333, 01784333333) at any time. Nine trained staff members are currently deployed at the call centre to provide information services.
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
Published: Tuesday, March 22, 2022
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