Andolan (Organizing South Asian Workers) is a non-governmental, membership-based group in New York City that organizes and advocates on behalf of South Asian immigrant workers, with particular focus on Bangladeshi, Pakistani, Indian, Nepalese, and Sri Lankan workers in the retail, food service, and domestic work industries, many of whom are women.
Founded in 1998 by low-wage South Asian workers, Andolan’s goal is to support and empower working-class communities to realize their rights and overcome obstacles such as language barriers, discrimination, immigration status, and gaps in social services for legal assistance and other types of support. Andolan’s major program areas include providing support to workers, promoting legal advocacy, and community campaigning through meetings, educational workshops, referrals for medical assistance, counseling, and translation services. The group supports members navigating the legal process against abusive employers for wage violations, sexual harassment, assault, domestic violence, and imprisonment.
Andolan works in coalition with other organizations on campaigns related to worker’s rights and human rights, such as the Campaign to increase the Minimum Wage and the Campaign Against Diplomatic Immunity of UN Employees.
To learn more about the contents of the Andolan (Organizing South Asian Workers) Records, located at the NYU Tamiment Library & Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives, view the collection’s finding aid.