Flow Monitoring Surveys: Insights into the Profiles and Vulnerabilities of Lao Migrants to Thailand

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From mid-July to mid-August 2019, a total of 401 Lao nationals (152 female) were surveyed in Vientiane Capital, all of whom identified as migrant workers. The 401 migrant workers were categorized in two differentmigrant groups. The first group was comprised of outgoing migrants, leaving Lao People’s Democratic Republic for employment in Thailand (n=249) and the second group were incoming migrants, returning from employment in Thailand (n=152). Two different survey tools were designed to capture the most accurate information possible for both target groups. The findings serve to identify migration patterns as well as common challenges and vulnerabilities and can be used to better inform policy and programming for the protection and assistance of migrant workers.

The results indicate that migration between Lao People’s Democratic Republic and Thailand is cyclical; many migrants that had previously worked in Thailand continue to return to Thailand for further employment. The main findings of the report show that the information levels and expectations of outgoing migrants are for the most part in line with the experiences and impressions of returning migrants.