“Prepare measures for moving migrant workers to workplaces and accidents at work”

[이데일리 황병서 기자] Migrant workers in Korea demanded freedom of movement in their workplaces and measures to eradicate industrial accidents. This is due to the continued poor working environment, with the industrial accident mortality rate being three times that of Koreans.

Migrant workers in Korea are calling for freedom of movement in their workplaces at the ‘Migrant Workers Action Day’ rally held at Seoul Station Plaza on the afternoon of the 21st. (Photo = Reporter Hwang Byung-seo)

On the afternoon of the 21st, the Confederation of Trade Unions, the Migrant Workers’ Union, the Migrant Workers’ Equal Solidarity, the Foreign Migrant Labor Movement Council, the Osan Migrant Workers Center, and the Suwon Community Center held a ‘Migrant Workers Action Day’ rally at Seoul Station Plaza in Jung-gu, Seoul. About 200 migrants from the Philippines, Nepal and Cambodia attended, including Udaya Rai, chairman of the Immigration Union, and Jamilk, the head of the Suwon Community Center.

On the same day, these groups were held to △guarantee freedom of movement for migrant workers, △guarantee the right to work for all migrant workers, △abolish the guidelines on the compulsory collection of accommodation and meals for migrant workers; They demanded an end to discrimination and violence against migrant workers, preparation of fundamental measures to prevent industrial accidents for migrant workers, an end to the forced crackdown on undocumented workers, an end to racial discrimination and the enactment of an anti-discrimination law.

First, Udaya Rai, chairman of the Migrant Workers’ Union, said, “We are holding this rally today to demand the implementation of a work permit system rather than an employment permit system that denies the rights of migrant workers. making,” he said. He continued, “This is because we do not have the right to change our workplace and to choose,” he added.

Workplace safety issues were also pointed out. He said, “We do not provide proper safety equipment and employers do not comply with the Industrial Safety Act.

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According to the results of analysis of serious accidents by the Ministry of Employment and Labor, among the 668 fatal accidents that occurred in 2021, migrant workers accounted for 75 or 11.2%. Considering that foreigners (811,000 people) accounted for 3.8% of the total domestic wage workers (2992,000 people) last year announced by the National Statistical Office, this means that the death rate for migrant workers is three times higher than that of Koreans.

Park Hee-eun, vice chairman of the Democratic Labor Committee, emphasized that migrant workers are the same in the fields where Korean workers cannot work. Vice Chairman Park said, “Recently, the Korean government has said that it will introduce a large number of migrant workers to industries that lack labor manpower, including shipyards. We’re going to push them in,” he said.

Meanwhile, after the rally, these groups marched about 2km to the nearby Yongsan Presidential Office.

Migrant workers in Korea are calling for freedom of movement in their workplaces at the ‘Migrant Workers Action Day’ rally held at Seoul Station Plaza on the afternoon of the 21st. (Photo = Reporter Hwang Byung-seo)

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