COVID-19 Impact on Informal Women Workers and their Cooperatives: Recommendations from SEWA Cooperative Federation

With SEWA Cooperative Federation’s experience in enabling sustainable livelihoods for informal women workers, through worker-owned cooperatives, the organisation has conducted an assessment of its member cooperatives across trades: agriculture, handicrafts, services, social security and finance, to analyse the socio-economic impact of the pandemic. Based on preliminary results from our study, we have been able to highlight some key advocacy asks that would enable the restoration of workers’ lives and livelihoods.


The initial results suggest: - Between March and July, there was a 65% decrease in members' household incomes. - There was a significant loss of revenue as enterprises were either completely shut down or running at a capacity of less than 50% during the lockdown. - The agriculture, dairy, and health sectors were more robust sectors, since they were deemed essential. However, the handicrafts, service and finance sectors saw a decline.
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  • Gujarat


  • Policy recommendations


  • Financial inclusion
  • Gender-based issues
  • Livelihoods
  • Skilling/vocational education
  • Social Protection