JORDAN: Migrant Workers Join Trade Unions after Strike

 

On the 11 of December, during the ILO ATUC Multi - stakeholder workshop on Empowering and organizing migrant workers in Jordan, BWI joined workers in an industrial action. 

 

BWI MENA Region Coordinator Wassim Rifi, and the President of  BWI affiliate GTUCW, Mahmoud Al Hiyary, participated in a strike by 50 migrant workers from Syria, Egypt and India working on a project for the MNC ARABTEC, building four towers for the MNC ARABTEC at the 5th circle in Amman.

 

The workers had not been paid their salaries for October and November. During the action, the  head of the responsible subcontractor was hiding in his office.

 

Wassim Rifi, Mahmoud Al Hiyary and two inspectors from the Jordanian Ministry of Labor listened to the complaints of workers. They  visited the office of the employer, who received a written warning from the inspectors.

 

Discussions between the employer, BWI and the GTUCW led to the signature of a collective agreement which provided for:

 

- The direct payment of the October salary;
- A 10-day deadline to pay the November salary;
- The right of workers to communicate at any time directly with the Union; and
- Visits by the Union to the worksite.

 

Commenting on this action, BWI Ambet Yuson said, “The prompt and effective intervention of Al Hiyary and Rifi in joining with striking migrant workers is a concrete demonstration of BWI’s commitment to stand with all construction workers.  We will continue to organise and represent both national and migrant workers in Jordan and fight for the improvement of labour standards in that country. An essential part of that struggle on issues like non-payment of wages is that the Ministry of Labour continues to inspect worksites and expands its activity so the laws of Jordan protecting workers' rights are fully enforced".