Modern Slavery

by Ève Lacroix on October 18, 2013 - 12:17pm

The BBC News article, posted on September 26, explains that 111 construction workers that were employed to prepare Brazil for the upcoming World Cup are experiencing precarious conditions. Indeed, companies left the country to recruit workers in economically inferior states, promising them an interesting monthly salary of $625. On the other hand, in order to assure their own employment, the workers had to pay fees going above $220. These numerous immigrant workers were then sent to the construction site at the Sao Paulo international airport. However, not all of them actually began to work. The unlucky ones were placed in "one of 11 makeshift camps" located close to the construction site. They were discovered by the Labour attorney general's office, which described them as confronting "conditions analogue to slaves".  In the following month, this government ministry had to engage in a legal process in order to pursue the contractors. In fact, the Brazilian legislation is requiring these employers to contract their migrant workers in their original state before transferring them to the construction site outside of their country.  

From my perspective, this article shows that the battle for human rights has not been won yet in Brazil. It is outrageous that corrupted contractors deceived unfortunate people to take advantage of them, probably considering them as inferior individuals. I believe it is inadmissible to mistreat any human beings like they do. However, even if the Brazilian government has already applied laws to avoid this kind of unfortunate situation, this case proves it still is a current issue in that South American country. We do not know yet what the legal procedures against the companies will bring in the future. I hope this social problem will be an eye opener to the leaders of the State, and will denounce other similar cases that might happen anywhere else in the world. Hence, the fact is that "other World Cup-related building sites" are being inspected. After all, it is quite ironic that this international athletic competition should bring people together in an atmosphere of rejoicing, and most of all promote values of justice and equality, but instead leads to disastrous tragedies.





This is an excellent choice of article and I am glad to have read it, since I was not aware of this terrible event. I completely agree with you; it is very frustrating to read about people (contractors in this case) taking advantage and manipulating others for their own benefit. Even if this happened in Brazil, a country well known for its corruption, I think it is important to see this problem on a worldwide scale and to, collectively , demand change. In order to make the exploitation of workers decrease, more severe consequences should follow these acts and an intensification in the verification of construction plans, budgets, employment and sites should be effectuated. It is truly deceiving and eye opening to realize in such a way that exploitation resembling slavery still occurs in 2013.

I can`t believe slavery is still around in the world. It has been years since I have heard anything along the lines of slave type work. The people that made these make shift camps should be ashamed of themselves. That is just awful. These people thought they were getting jobs but instead they are put into these camps. Instead of putting them in camps they could leave them alone until works comes.

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