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Migrant Construction Workers in the Middle East

 

A new Human Rights Watch report highlights the plight of migrant construction workers. It also highlights the issues faced by these workers in the Middle East. This article examines the importance of ensuring a high quality of life for these workers. If you’re interested in learning more about the issue of migrant construction workers, please read the full article. Then you can make a difference by spreading the word. To do that, please take action!

Human Rights Watch report on migrant construction workers

The Human Rights Watch (HRW) report, Building a Better World Cup: Migrant construction workers in Qatar: Living in inhumane conditions, warns that hundreds of thousands of South Asian migrant construction workers are facing serious exploitation and abuse, including forced labor. As the host of the 2022 World Cup, the Qatar government must respect the rights of migrant workers, including enforcing strict labor laws and ensuring that construction companies uphold international labor standards.

The report, released by HRW in April 2016, cites interviews conducted with migrant construction workers in Rostov-on-Don and other Russian cities. The report highlights the issues of wage theft and nonpayment of wages. Human Rights Watch also found that workers were often not provided with legal employment documents or paid wages on time. The report further notes that in some cases, employers refused to pay their workers’ wages, and that they often retaliated against their employees.

Despite the widespread lack of information, workers can still seek redress if they are injured on the job. In cases where dispute resolution does not resolve the issue, workers can approach the Ministry of Labor to get a fair hearing. In the meantime, if the dispute is not resolved, it is referred to the judiciary. However, the Ministry of Labor has failed to publish comprehensive data on workplace injuries and fatalities.

Issues faced by migrant construction workers in the Middle-East

Many workers in the Middle-East are experiencing difficulties in finding decent and safe accommodation. Overcrowding is a major issue and makes it impossible to comply with hygiene guidelines and social distancing measures. Some governments have taken action to alleviate overcrowding, such as Bahrain, which recently ordered employers to house no more than five workers in a single room and to place workers at least three meters apart. Many workers have even been evicted from their homes due to non-payment of rent.

The GCC immigration system has exacerbated this problem. The kafala sponsorship system forces workers to have an in-country sponsor, usually an employer, to stay in the country. The sponsor also assumes responsibility for the employee. Without consent from the employer, the worker is unable to leave, and faces deportation or imprisonment. Furthermore, kafala sponsorship is often linked to forced labor, with the sponsor requiring written consent from the worker before making changes to their employment status.

The plight of migrant laborers is particularly troubling in the Middle-East. They are often uneducated and burdened with familial responsibilities. Furthermore, they earn considerably more money in the GCC than in their home countries, making it difficult for them to make ends meet. An Indian refuse worker can earn $45 a month while an equivalent wage in Kuwait is $560. This disparity is enough to push even the toughest woman to accept the harsh living conditions they face in a foreign country.

Importance of quality of life for migrant construction workers

Quality of life (QoL) among migrant construction workers in Bangalore, India was assessed in a recent study. Four hundred construction workers were interviewed and provided with a questionnaire that assessed their sociodemographic profile and WHOQOLBREF scale. The factors associated with QoL were tested using an independent t-test and chi-square test. P-values less than 0.05 were considered statistically significant. The quality of life (QoL) of migrant construction workers in Bangalore was generally moderate.

Improving health conditions for migrant construction workers is an urgent priority in the global economy. The construction industry should lead efforts to improve migrant construction workers’ quality of life, since a healthier workforce will benefit the whole economy. As multimillion-dollar sporting events draw attention to the situation, we must take a closer look at what we can do to improve migrant construction workers’ health conditions.

QOL is strongly associated with stress, with living conditions and mental health influencing the most. Interventions should focus on improving living conditions, addressing the psychological aspects of stress, and improving migrant construction workers’ mental health. In addition to the psychological aspects, interventional programs should focus on improving the living conditions of migrant workers, such as getting suitable accommodation and access to essential services. They should also focus on addressing the needs of migrant construction workers who don’t live in the community.