Who We Are

First launched on 28 October 2012 as Indian Workers Association of New Zealand.

Leading up to this time the need to reach out to migrant workers of Indian origin had become overwhelmingly apparent. Unite Union had increasingly observed that migrant workers in the fast food sector appeared to understand their right to unionise. But there was always hesitation for the workers to open up and discuss the problems they faced in the workplace. As a result, the workers continued to suffer in silence and the exploitation by employers increased phenomenally.

The exploitation was rife not only among Indian workers but also migrant workers of other ethnicities. It was only appropriate for the name to be changed to Migrant Workers Association of Aotearoa (MWA) in order to extend help to all migrant workers in New Zealand.

Early work was limited to communicating with workers in the Indian languages and being able to relay the culturally sensitive issues they battled with to the wider community in New Zealand. It wasn’t long before MWA was protesting and holding pickets in support of exploited migrant workers. One of the very first being a liquor shop in South Auckland followed by many more.

Making migrant workers aware of their rights and responsibilities is the proactive work carried out by MWA. It takes place in the form of weekly radio shows, seminars, public meetings etc.

Working with many trade unions, social activists and religious organisations MWA is an autonomous organisation.

MWA continues to fight for migrant workers’ rights and against injustice and exploitation in the workplace.

‘Workers United Will Never be Defeated’

How can we help?

Workers Rights

Ensuring you know your working rights and are adhered at your workplace.


Ensuring you are getting fair treatment in society.


Our support creates self-sustaining, powered communities.

Report your experience

We fight for migrant workers’ rights, against injustice and exploitation in the workplace.


Share & Stand with us on fight against exploitation