Portuguese, Polish workers exploited in the Netherlands


This video says about itself:

In Italy, hundreds of African migrant workers are working in terrible conditions for less than $40 a day.

They are put to work picking fruit in the country’s south, and opposition to their exploitation is often quashed by the mafia.

Charlie Angela reports from Campania where activists are pushing for better wages and conditions.

Labour conditions in the Netherlands are usually not as bad as in southern Italy. Or as bad as in Qatar where thousands of immigrant workers are dying. Still, there are moves in the wrong direction and at least some similarities.

Translated from daily Limburgs Dagblad/De Limburger in the Netherlands, 5 October 2013:

Socialist Party demands end to exploitation of tunnel builders

The provincial, local and nationwide Socialist Party elected representatives and the local Maastricht People’s Party demand that national, provincial and local authorities take action as soon as possible against the exploitation of foreign workers in the A2 tunnel project.

Maastricht, from our reporters

The parties write this in letters to Limburg province and the city of Maastricht. Paul Ulenbelt of the SP in the national parliament has also announced that he will bring the matter to the attention of the Minister this weekend. The subject is also on the agenda of the City Management Committee for Environment and Mobility of Maastricht. That committee will meet next Monday.

The parties are responding to publications in daily De Limburger / Limburgs Dagblad showing that dozens of Portuguese and Polish tunnel builders are exploited. From the gross salary of the Portuguese and Poles working in Maastricht each month 968.75 euros net are retained for services which their employer Atlanco corporation supplies through an intermediate company. That’s about half of their gross salary. For that money they live, three men per dwelling, in houses marked for demolition in Maastricht. Twice a year, Atlanco gives them a ticket home worth a few hundred euro. According to Atlanco, they also pay transport costs to and from work. However, the tunnel is located in the backyard of the houses destined for demolition in the Mayor Bauduin Street.

The provincial SP demands in an angry letter immediate intervention by the province. Group Chairman Daan Prevoo argues that the case should be investigated and that measures should be taken to prevent exploitation. The local SP group has also voiced strong criticism of responsible alderman Albert Nuss (PvdA party): “The SP wonders how it is possible that Alderman Nuss can look so complacently while public relations spin doctors talk about how beautiful the A2 project is, while such practices occur. The cover-up behaviour of alderman Nuss who refuses to speak to journalists, raises serious suspicion that he does know.” The Maastricht People’s Party writes to the Maastricht city authorities that they assume “that you are going to work as soon as possible to stop these abuses and exploitation.”

Construction firms accused of exploiting foreign staff on tunnel project: here.

Bosses’ fraud in Maastricht tunnel construction: here.

19 thoughts on “Portuguese, Polish workers exploited in the Netherlands

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  9. 11 nov. 2013 ‘Sociaal akkoord’ in Limburg

    Ruim twee miljoen euro aan ingehouden loon claimt FNV Bouw voor 70 Portugese bouwvakkers, die werken aan de A2 in Zuid-Limburg. Zoals we op 6 oktober meldden wordt de helft van hun brutoloon ingehouden voor overnachting in een sloopwoning en twee keer per jaar een vliegticket naar huis. Regelrechte diefstal. Het bedrijf Atlanco Rimec waarvoor zij werken is in Ierland gevestigd, maar de bond stelt ook de hoofdaannemers Strukton en Ballast Nedam aansprakelijk. De overheid doet hier niets aan, want rijk en provincie Limburg zijn zelf de opdrachtgevers van de bouwwerkzaamheden aan de A2.
    Overigens wordt het sociaal akkoord door de reformisten van de vakbondstop verdedigt met de belofte dat de regering tegen dit soort loondumpingpraktijken zal gaan optreden. Niet dus.

    http://www.rodemorgen.nl/overzicht/nieuws.htm#172

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  10. Polen uitgebuit in Maastricht
    Update: maandag 9 dec 2013, 17:41

    In Maastricht is op Sinterklaasavond een man aangehouden op verdenking van het uitbuiten van vier Polen. Hij liet ze werken in twee etenskraampjes op de kerstmarkt in Maastricht. Dat meldt de inspectie van Sociale Zaken.

    De Polen stonden volgens de inspectie 12 tot 15 per dag in de kramen, voor 2 euro netto per uur. Sinds half november hadden ze helemaal geen loon gekregen.

    Verder waren de Polen gehuisvest in een kleine ‘unit’ op de parkeerplaats. Het onderzoek naar de uitbuiting duurt voort, maar de exploitant krijgt sowieso boetes voor overtreding van de wetten over arbeidstijden en het minimumloon.

    http://nos.nl/tekst/584593-polen-uitgebuit-in-maastricht.html

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