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New short film to highlight poor working conditions of migrants

The video features interviews with workers, economists and trade unionists about their experiences and the vulnerability of migrant workers in a recession.

Image: Screenshot from Vimeo

TRADE UNION SIPTU and the Migrant Rights Centre Ireland (MRCI) have launched a short social justice film documenting the experiences of low wage migrant workers.

‘Food for Thought’ is informed by research carried out by the MRCI last year with 120 migrant restaurant workers which identified non-compliance and exploitation as an on-going concern in the sector.

MCRI said the film shares migrant worker experiences of poor working conditions, exploitation and the struggle to live and work with dignity. The video also includes interviews with trade unionists, economists and worker leaders.

SIPTU Services Division Organiser, John King, said non-compliance with basic employment law, such as the national minimum wage, is a “chronic problem” for low wage workers today.

“The National Employment Rights Authority’s (NERA) most recent report, on the back of almost one thousand inspections, found only a 51 per cent compliance rate with the National Minimum Wage,” he said.

Speaking at the launch in Liberty Hall in Dublin today, worker leader and chef, Enamur Chowdhury, said: “In the past I suffered exploitation at the hands of my employer. I refuse to stand by and let that happen to other workers.”

“The film shares our stories but is also a message from good employers that it is possible to uphold the law and still run a profitable business. It also highlights some of the changes needed such as the right of work permit holders to change jobs more freely,” he added.


(Video: /Vimeo)

Related: Immigrants “do not fare as well as Irish nationals” in labour market>

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