Экономическая ситуация в Румынии плохая уже много лет. Ни для кого не секрет, что много молодых и трудоспособных людей уехали из Румынии в разные страны на заработки.
Старообрядцы в этом потоке также имеют свое заметное место. Более 20 тысяч старообрядцев, которых румыны называют липованами, в последние 10 лет покинули Румынию в поисках работы по всему миру. Большие колонии старообрядцев образовались в Италии, Испании и Греции.
Немало староверов в общем потоке трудовых мигрантов из Румынии уехало также и в Израиль. В этой стране они заняты в сфере обслуживания (в том числе и медицинского – няни, сиделки и т.д.) и строительства. В последнее время сообщается, что правительство Израиля, стремясь уменьшить зависимость страны от трудовых ресурсов из Палестины, готово увеличить долю трудовых мигрантов из Болгарии и Румынии. Старообрядцы из этих стран нередко оказываются в поисках работы в этой Ближневосточной стране.
Немало трудовых мигрантов работает в Израиле в сфере строительства. О реальной ситуации с рабочими из Румынии в этой сфере рассказывает Исраэль Дрори в своей книге, которая вышла в издательстве Нью-Йоркского университета в 2009 году. Он рассказывает, что в Израиле есть некоторые крупные строительные фирмы, к которым нет совершенно никаких претензий, они выполняют все требования как по обращению с рабочими, так и в условиях труда. Но есть и много агентств по трудоустройству, особенно в Румынии, которые поставляют бесправную рабочую силу на Ближний Восток. C этими рабочими работодатели там обращаются очень жестоко. У таких рабочих из Румынии отнимают паспорта, условия их труда мало чем отличаются от современного рабства.
Но даже для таких рабочих есть возможность пожаловаться на нарушение своих трудовых прав, обратившись в общественную неправительственную организацию Kav La’Oved. Об этом и пишет г-н Исраеэль Дрори. В частности, он рассказывает печальную историю одного липованина из Румынии по имени Василий, который получил производственную травму на стройке, и хозяева пытались отправить его домой, не заплатив того, что полагается по закону.
Нам кажется, что информация о реальном положении и перспективах трудовых мигрантов из Румынии в Израиле, которая представлена в книге Исраэля Дрори, поможет многим людям из старообрядческих селений Румынии принять осмысленное решение: ехать или нет на работу в строительный сектор на Ближний Восток.
Foreign Workers in Israel: Global Perspectives
By Israel Drori
Published by State University of New York Press, Albany
2009 State University of New York
Chapter 4: Employment Practices: The System of Placement Agencies
Testimony: A Day of Negotiations on Behalf of Workers at Kav La’Oved
Kav La’Oved, a voluntary organization that protects the rights of labor migrants in Israel, is located in what was a three-room residential apartment off of a corridor. (…) During office hours, especially on Fridays, the place is brimming with labor migrants: Romanians, Turks, Latin Americans, Chinese, Filipinos, and others. They sit on benches along the hall and in the rooms in silence or talking in hushed voices. The Romanians and Turks come in groups, the Filipinos come in pairs, and the Latinos often come with their children. All wait to be received by the staff to register complaints about their employers and the authorities.
Baruch Y. is responsible for the Romanian construction workers. A Romanian Jew, he is proud of his credibility with them. He is their champion. Well-known nationality for his vocal and relentless pursuit of employers who breach labor migrants’ rights, Baruch took it upon himself to go after contractors and placement agencies that “suck the workers’ blood”. He is a blunt man in his forties, with a wide face, blue eyes, and short hair. Baruch sees himself as a crusader against them, believing that the most effective strategy for protecting the workers is through bullying their employers. (…)
Baruch sits behind his simple wooden desk, drinking endless cups of coffee served by Vasily, a tall and slim Romanian construction worker who was crippled in a work accident. While he was in the hospital, his employer arranged to have him deported from the country. Vasily ran away, injured and in pain, and eventually reached Kav La’Oved, where Baruch gave him financial assistance and took him under his wing. Vasily was interviewed in the press and has appeared on television – he even starred in a docudrama about labor migrants in Israel. Until his compensation claim against his employer and National Social Security is settled, Vasily regularly visits Kav La’Oved, serving as Baruch’s right-hand man and as a living testament to the evils of Israeli employers.
Along the walls in Baruch’s office sits a group of weathered and weary Romanian workers. Some are young but look old, and those who are old look even older. They all come from Zernitza, a small town in southern Romania. They were recruited by People, a placement agency, to work for Malibo, a large construction firm that builds new residential neighborhoods. For two weeks, this group of ten workers has been congregating at Kav La’Oved. (…)
While we waited for the representatives of Malibo and People to arrive. Baruch embarked on a passionate speech:
The government of Israel creates a state of masters and servants. The state issues work permits to the constructors. [The constructors] are given the task of recruiting for placement agencies. And the workers are prisoners under both [constructors and placement agencies]. The movement [workrs] arrive in Israel, their passports are taken, and at that moment, they become slaves. The placement agencies have only one goal – money – and they don’t care about the constructors or the workers. A representative of the placement agency travels to Romania and makes contract with “local slave merchants,” sometimes more than one. Oftentimes, the workers pass through four or five hands before they arrive in Israel. To each hand, the workers pay. Only after arriving before his Israeli employer, the placement agency tells the worker that all the representatives that helped recruit him were paid of his behalf, and therefore, the worker must repay a large sum.
The taking of passports from workers when they arrive is a criminal offence. It deprives them of their personal freedom. In order to get his passport back, the worker has to pay a lot of money. The taking of passports is coordinated with the government officials at the airport. When the worker lands, a Ministry of Interior representative takes his passport and signs it. The passport is not given back to the worker – instead, it is given to the placement agency representative. When workers complain to the police about their passports being confiscated, they are threatened with arrest. I’m working on a case of a worker who had an argument with his employer and wanted to go home. He bought the ticket with his own money, but his employer refused to return his passport. I went with him to the police station to file a complaint. The police officer declared, “I’m arresting him”. When I asked him why, he snapped, “Because he is illegal. He left his employer.” It’s crazy! He had been working just four of five
hours earlier. I tried to explain to the officer that he had just left his employer because of an argument over money and that the worker wanted to go home. The officer didn’t care. He had decided to arrest him. I objected, «Why are you not arresting the employer who took his passport?” he told me that if I didn’t shut my mouth, he would arrest me too.
The Romanian workers are sitting along the walls in faded gray-and-brown suits, reminiscent of school uniforms, and they are listening almost as attentively as disciplined schoolchildren. Baruch pauses intermittently to translate all he says into Romanian, and they all express agreement with his account. Baruch continues:
When the employer confiscates the passports, he makes the worker a slave. He can ask him to shine his shoes today; he can beat him tomorrow, and expel him the day after tomorrow. The system is like that. [The employer will] buy plane tickets, come at night with some bullies, wake up the workers, and without letting them pack up their stuff, take them to airport On the way to the airport, he’ll bear them up and threaten them, saying that if they speak at the airport they’ll get beaten up there too. The workers are not accustomed to people with guns. It’s enough for them to see a pistol on a belt for them to do what they’re told. I’ve seen many incidents like that at the airport.
Baruch grows increasingly animated and points to each worker sitting on the bench as he says:
This person, and this person, and this person are working under pressure. The scaffolding is insecure. No Israeli or Palestinian would ever step onto them, but the Romanians are forced to, otherwise they will be sent back. Workers get injured and nobody reports it. They prefer to expel the workers without providing treatment. If he is really wounded, they might send him to a hospital. But they’ll check on him every day, and when he recovers a little, they’ll expel him.
Baruch looks at Vasily, and says: “I succeeded in his case, but there are many more like him”.
The people from the construction and the placement agency arrive. Baruch gives them a cold hello and makes them to wait in the corridor. “Let them boil there for a while”. He continues with his speech, talking loudly so that the visitors waiting by the door will hear:
The placement agencies exploit the workers. They cut payments for work hours. If the workers work 280 hours, they pay for 220 hours. They deduct travel expenses from the salary, even through the workers walk to the building site. Many times they steal workers from their legal employers and sell them to the highest bidder. I have a case of a few workers who were sold to a metal shop. In the shop there was a dog. The shop owner told the workers to work during the day and guard the shop at night, instead of the dog. They are worth less than the dog. This is what they did. In the end, they received no money – not for the day or for the night work.
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Много людей, не выдержав условий труда, убегает, о них нет никакой информации. Их ищут как беглых рабов: «Они сбежали от своих хозяев. Если вы имеете информацию о людях, фото которых помещены ниже, сообщите по указанным в объявлении телефонам».
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