Nepali Waitresses Subjected to Sexual Exploitation
Tuesday, June 24, 2008 3:24 PM

Thousands of women and girls working as waitresses at the cabin bars and restaurants in Kathmandu are commonly subjected to sexual exploitation, abuse, and rape by their customers and employers, according to Nepali NGOs. Most of the cabin waitresses are migrant workers from impoverished nearby villages, and many have been internally displaced, divorced, or subjected to domestic abuse in the past. The women and girls are hired to "entertain" customers in private cabins and then forced into sexual exploitation and violence.

According to Saathi, a local NGO, the cabin waitresses have difficulty gaining assistance from police and the legal system because they are portrayed by the local media as commercial sex workers, not victims. Saathi helps women and girls leave their jobs and escape further exploitation by providing them with temporary housing, training, and new jobs.

Compiled from: "Nepal: Cabin Waitresses Subjected to Sexual Exploitation," Integrated Regional Information Networks, 20 June 2008.