Migrant workers subjected to racist and sexist bullying in UK
London, May 16 : Hundreds of migrant workers in UK are subjected to inhuman living conditions, are poverty stricken and live under constant fear, according to a report.
The report 'Experiences of Forced Labour in the UK Food Industry,' written by Joseph Rowntree, is one of the largest studies into the plight of these workers who are exposed to abusive practices in every industry in the UK.
The researchers of the report discovered that workers were also subjected to racist and sexist bullying and threats, The Independent reports.
The workers were isolated, unable to speak English and also unaware of their rights. Many of whom were driven to self-harm.
"I needed money. I needed work. I didn't care any more. I was at the point when you'd rather kill me than go back there. I lost weight. I was tense and sad all the time," a 30-year-old Romanian said.
"It's about survival. Feeling bullied or suppressed is normal and unavoidable. There are no alternatives," a 50-year-old Chinese worker Ah Lin said.
Researchers found that too many workers were recruited and were paid only enough to meet their debts to the gang masters. The workers continued to live in penury, forced to share cramped, sub-standard accommodation.
Others workers complained of feeling like machines, they stayed under constant surveillance and given targets that were impossible to meet.
Sam Scott, one of the authors, said: "Most migrants we spoke to are in the UK legally, but their employment conditions are far from legal. Withholding payment, illegal deductions from wages and no proper breaks are regular occurrences."
Researchers interviewed about 62 workers, mostly from Poland, China, Lithuania and Latvia, working in south Lincolnshire, east-central Scotland, south west England, London and Liverpool.
More than two thirds of workers complained of living in fear and working for more than 50 hours a week. They even complained of being paid below the minimum wage of 5.83 pounds an hour and illegal deductions from their wages. (ANI)