On the small island of Bahrain, 77% of the workforce is made up of migrant workers, most of whom come from South Asia and work in low-skilled, low-paid jobs. The majority are highly vulnerable temporary workers, concentrated in the construction industry and domestic service sector, where working and living conditions are harsh.
From Libya (1) to Bahrain(2), migrant workers have been caught hostage in the whirlwind of the popular uprisings in the Arab world. All too often exploited and denied their rights, they are today the direct or indirect victims of the repressive policies imposed in response to the wave of hope for change sweeping the region.
Italy and the other Member States of the EU should suspend all measures of forcible removal towards Tunisia and share in the reinstallation of Libyan and non-Libyan refugees who have to flee Libya.
Extreme exploitation of migrant workers is a dire trend throughout Europe. The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) is releasing Never Work Alone - a guide for trade unions and other civil society organisations to jointly combat modern-day slavery and trafficking of workers.