SEA Junction, in collaboration with IPSR In-House Seminar and Mahidol Migration Centre (MMC), presents the bi-monthly event series titled “Wednesday SEA Mobilities,” which began in February 2022. On the last Wednesday of every two months, we jointly host seminars and panels discussing a wide range of current mobility issues in Southeast Asia. This event featured a presentation by Dr. Yahel Kurlander on “Beyond the Harvest: Exploring Health Conditions of Thai Migrant Labor Workers in Israel.” It was held on 30 August 2023, from 5.30 to 7.00 pm at SEA Junction and was live-streamed on our Facebook Page.

For over three decades, Israeli farmers have been employing Thai migrant laborers in their agricultural sector. This has also been facilitated through bilateral agreements between Israel and Thailand, which regulate the recruitment and employment of these migrant workers. However, migrant workers from Thailand in Israel’s agriculture sector often face health risks and poor well-being due to work conditions and loopholes in legislation and the health system.

Dr. Yahel Kurlander, an expert sociologist, studies various aspects of the labor market concerning Thai migrant workers. Her research covers the impacts of COVID-19 on non-Israeli migrant workers, work conditions of agricultural labor from Thailand, and the experiences of women workers employed in male-dominated occupations, with a focus on the agricultural sector in Israel. During this event, she explored the challenges impacting the lives and rights of Thai migrant workers in Israel.

Photo credit: Lattapol Jirapathomsakul