To passport or not to passport ? That is the question (Know Before You Go impact assessment) by Rapid Asia in Partnership with IOM X

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Ever considered going to another country, for vacation or work, without a passport? The answer might be obvious to you — but for millions around the world, it’s not as clear.

It is estimated that there are 25.8 million migrant workers in Asia Pacific¹, of which four million are in Thailand, mostly coming from Cambodia, Myanmar and Lao PDR.² An estimated 1.6 million have irregular status in Thailand³, which means they do not having the proper travel (passport) and/or working documents (work permit and visa).

There are many reasons why someone would irregularly migrate to another country, such as the high cost of a passport, the time-consuming application process or possibly a broker has promised he/she can get them into the country for a fraction of the price of going legally. No matter the reason, migrating irregularly can put anyone at risk of being exploited or trafficked for forced labour. Unfortunately, unscrupulous brokers/recruitment agents, employers, and others will take advantage of someone’s irregular status for their own profit.

IOM X produced Know Before You Go, a short animated video about how to migrate safely. The video is being shown at IOM migrant resource centers around Cambodia and at workshops in Lao PDR. In order to test the effectiveness and impact, IOM X partnered with research agency Rapid Asia to conduct pre- and post-surveys with 30 aspirant male migrants aged 18–35, from Cambodia to see if there was a shift in their knowledge, attitudes and intended behaviour of migrating safely (legally with the right travel and/or work documents).

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