Fellow Since 2013
Labor Rights Promotion Network
This profile was prepared when Sompong Srakaew was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2013.
The New Idea
Sompong is working to end the vicious cycle of human trafficking and labor abuse faced by children of low-wage migrant workers. Believing that discrimination and marginalization are the root causes of labor exploitation, Sompong is dissolving discriminatory attitudes by integrating formerly isolated and vulnerable migrant children into Thai public schools. He is building new alliances for the advancement of migrant children’s education with school administrators, parents, government officials and, most importantly, employers in industries with poor labor practices. Sompong is developing replicable models of bilingual classrooms to ease the transition for migrant children, in addition to building mutual trust between local residents and migrants through youth camps and parent workshops. He has set up a network of community watchdog volunteers, from both migrant and local Thai communities, who report incidents of labor abuse to his organization. Sompong is not only collaborating with law enforcement officials in prosecuting and drawing public attention to abusive labor practices, he is also engaging previously exploitative private industries that most rely on migrant labor into allies, who are in turn, funding educational opportunities and community integration activities for migrant children.