Opportunities, Challenges and Position of Female Flower Farm Workers: The Case of Three Flower Farms in South West Showa; Oromiya Regional State

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Addis Ababa University


The development of floriculture industlY in Ethiopia has created opportunities for th e countlY and its citizens. Ethiopia is now gelling foreign exchange from flower export and th e industry has also created job opportunities for both urban and rural population. Women specifically are th e dominant work force in the indUSl1y. Since it is a new phenomenon, the industlY has been assessed by few st udies. Majority of th e findings from researches and journals put in to question mark th e farms labor and welfare system. In light of th e findings, this stu dy is neli' in its nature of assessing th e positive impact of th e industry on th e employees. Thu s it has an objective of assessing opportunities, challenges and position of female workers based on a case study of thr ee flower farms in South west Showa zone (Sebeta) Or0111iya regional state. With the aim of the above objective sample survey was conducted, focus gro up discussion and Interview were held with female farm workers, managers and key informants and observation held by the researcher. The findings gath ered from th e above methods were analyzed both qualitatively and quantitatively. Th e result discloses that female farm workers in the selected far ms get few oppo rt uni ties and have challenges due to the poor working condit ion . They are also working in th e low paid posit ion. Income, selfconfidence, accesses for information, education and few in centives are some of th e opportunities that female farm workers obtained after they get the job in th e farm. On th e other hand th ese workers come across challenges like: job insecurity, as majority of them do not have contractual agreements; low wage which does not cover their basic need,· lack of training on var io us issues that may expose th em to health and oth er forms of hazardl· and if given may protect them from injuries; in adequate protective materials, lack of facili ties like: shower, rest room, cafeteria and clinic and th e absence of labor union which is their constitutional right. Based on th e findings, majority of women in the farms this study covers are found in low and less skilled position. Except for one farm, men employees occupy the farms managerial positi ons. And th e manag ers in th e farms under th e stu dy are awar e of ihe challenges that female workers face through , however due measurers do no t seem to be taken to cope with the problems listed above. Accordingly, the paper concludes that female workers in th e flowe r industry have both oppo rtunities and challenges and (but) are in the low job position. The challenges women face in the industry can be dealt with if the management g ives allention for the is sues. Due to managerial problems, workers are exposed for various challenges. Therefo re the study recommends that fa rm s should respect the constitu tional righ t of workers and respect other laws and regulations like: la bo r proclamation, international Code of Conduct and Ethiopian code of practice



Challenges and Position, of Female Flower Farm Workers