The BWI today launches a report that reveals serious violations of workers’ rights at the stadium construction sites for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. The abuses include dangerous working conditions and being forced to work outside in extremely cold weather – for wages below the minimum wage standard.
“Twenty-one construction workers died on stadium building sites during the preparations for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia. Most of these tragic deaths were because of falls from heights or because of heavy equipment falling on workers. These were tragedies that could have been averted if safety and health conditions were strictly enforced,” says Ambet Yuson, General Secretary of the Building and Wood Workers’ International (BWI).
The report also details the limitations of the inspection system put in place by FIFA.
Health and safety experts from BWI affiliates from Finland and Sweden, took part in 35 joint inspection visits of eight of the ten stadiums under construction or renovation. However, BWI members of the inspection teams were critical of the reporting methods adopted by the Klinsky Institute, the organisation that had been given the responsibility by the FIFA Local Organizing Committee to carry out the inspections. Their reports merely enumerated the number of cases of non-compliance addressed by the contractors while failing to analyse the inspection reports sufficiently and compel construction companies to fully implement the recommendations from the inspections.
“FIFA has clearly failed to show any serious commitment to use its leverage to ensure compliance with international labour standards during the stadium renovation and construction for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia,” he added. “For that reason, the BWI continues to call on FIFA to take action and adopt measures in its bidding documents and technical specifications to ensure decent work conditions at World Cup stadiums and related infrastructure,” says Ambet Yuson.
Download the report here: