• Bangladesh: Hundreds of arbitrarily detained migrant workers must be released

    The Bangladeshi authorities must immediately release at least 370 Bangladeshi migrant workers who were arbitrarily detained between July and September following their return to the country, said Amnesty International.

    In the fourth of a series of mass arrests of migrant workers for alleged criminal activity abroad, 32 people were detained in Dhaka on Sunday 28 September for “tarnishing the image of the country”, due to their alleged imprisonment in Syria from where they had been deported. In this, as with three other cases, no credible evidence of criminal wrongdoing has been shown nor have any charges been brought.

    These men and women are being arbitrarily detained in clear violation of Bangladesh’s human rights obligations
    David Griffiths, Director of the Office of the Secretary General

    The arbitrary detention of the workers violates the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), to which Bangladesh is a state party.

    “Not only have the Bangladeshi authorities failed to present any credible evidence of these workers’ supposed crimes, they have failed to specify any criminal charges. These men and women are being arbitrarily detained in clear violation of Bangladesh’s human rights obligations,” said David Griffiths, Director of the Office of the Secretary General.

    “With many now held in detention for several months, there is no time for further delay. The Bangladeshi authorities must either bring charges for internationally recognised criminal offences or release them immediately.”

    The 32 workers were initially jailed in Syria while trying to reach Italy and other European countries. They returned to Bangladesh on 13 September and were placed in quarantine for two weeks prior to their arrest, after the Syrian government commuted their jail terms.

    Between July and September, Bangladeshi police have jailed at least 370 returning migrant workers under section 54 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, which allows for arrest on the basis of having “reasonable suspicion” that a person may have been involved in a criminal offence outside Bangladesh.

    On 5 July 2020, 219 Bangladeshi workers who had returned from Kuwait, Qatar and Bahrain since May were arrested and detained. According to the police application to a court in Dhaka, the returnees were in jails in those countries for committing “various offences”, which were not specified. The workers were deported to Bangladesh after their sentences were commuted. A police request to detain the 219 for as long as an investigation continued to determine their offence was granted by the court.

    This was followed on 21 July by the arrest of another 36 migrant workers who had returned from Qatar and, on 1 September, by the arrest of 81 migrant workers who had returned to the country from Vietnam and 2 others from Qatar, after being exploited by traffickers.

    “The Bangladeshi police have effectively been given court permission to keep these workers in detention for as long as they like. There is no telling how long an investigation into hundreds of cases involving multiple countries may take. To keep people imprisoned without charge for such an indeterminate length of time is completely unacceptable,” said David Griffiths.


    Article 9 of the ICCPR safeguards the right to liberty and security of person and explicitly provides that “Everyone has the right to liberty and security of person. No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest or detention. No one shall be deprived of his liberty except on such grounds and in accordance with such procedure as are established by law.”

    #Bangladesh #retour #renvois #expulsions #détention #travailleurs_étrangers #migrants_bangladais

  • Xinjiang’s System of Militarized Vocational Training Comes to #Tibet

    Introduction and Summary

    In 2019 and 2020, the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) introduced new policies to promote the systematic, centralized, and large-scale training and transfer of “rural surplus laborers” to other parts of the TAR, as well as to other provinces of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). In the first 7 months of 2020, the region had trained over half a million rural surplus laborers through this policy. This scheme encompasses Tibetans of all ages, covers the entire region, and is distinct from the coercive vocational training of secondary students and young adults reported by exile Tibetans (RFA, October 29, 2019).

    The labor transfer policy mandates that pastoralists and farmers are to be subjected to centralized “military-style” (军旅式, junlüshi) vocational training, which aims to reform “backward thinking” and includes training in “work discipline,” law, and the Chinese language. Examples from the TAR’s Chamdo region indicate that the militarized training regimen is supervised by People’s Armed Police drill sergeants, and training photos published by state media show Tibetan trainees dressed in military fatigues (see accompanying images).

    Poverty alleviation reports bluntly say that the state must “stop raising up lazy people.” Documents state that the “strict military-style management” of the vocational training process “strengthens [the Tibetans’] weak work discipline” and reforms their “backward thinking.” Tibetans are to be transformed from “[being] unwilling to move” to becoming willing to participate, a process that requires “diluting the negative influence of religion.” This is aided by a worrisome new scheme that “encourages” Tibetans to hand over their land and herds to government-run cooperatives, turning them into wage laborers.

    An order-oriented, batch-style matching and training mechanism trains laborers based on company needs. Training, matching and delivery of workers to their work destination takes place in a centralized fashion. Recruitments rely, among other things, on village-based work teams, an intrusive social control mechanism pioneered in the TAR by Chen Quanguo (陈全国), and later used in Xinjiang to identify Uyghurs who should be sent to internment camps (China Brief, September 21, 2017). Key policy documents state that cadres who fail to achieve the mandated quotas are subject to “strict rewards and punishments” (严格奖惩措施, yange jiangcheng cuoshi). The goal of the scheme is to achieve Xi Jinping’s signature goal of eradicating absolute poverty by increasing rural disposable incomes. This means that Tibetan nomads and farmers must change their livelihoods so that they earn a measurable cash income, and can therefore be declared “poverty-free.”

    This draconian scheme shows a disturbing number of close similarities to the system of coercive vocational training and labor transfer established in Xinjiang. The fact that Tibet and Xinjiang share many of the same social control and securitization mechanisms—in each case introduced under administrations directed by Chen Quanguo—renders the adaptation of one region’s scheme to the other particularly straightforward.

    Historical Context

    As early as 2005, the TAR had a small-scale rural surplus labor training and employment initiative for pastoralists and farmers in Lhasa (Sina, May 13, 2005). The 11th Five-Year Plan (2006-2010) then specified that this type of training and labor transfer was to be conducted throughout the TAR (PRC Government, February 8, 2006). From 2012, the Chamdo region initiated a “military-style training for surplus labor force transfer for pastoral and agricultural regions” (农牧区富余劳动力转移就业军旅式培训, nongmuqu fuyu laodongli zhuanyi jiuye junlüshi peixun) (Tibet’s Chamdo, October 8, 2014). Chamdo’s scheme was formally established in the region’s 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-2020), with the goal of training 65,000 laborers (including urban unemployed persons) during that time (Chamdo Government, December 29, 2015).

    By 2016, Chamdo had established 45 related vocational training bases (TAR Government, November 17, 2016). Starting in 2016, the TAR’s Shannan region likewise implemented vocational training with “semi-military-style management” (半军事化管理, ban junshihua guanli) (Tibet Shannan Net, April 5, 2017). Several different sources indicate that Chamdo’s military-style training management was conducted by People’s Armed Police drill sergeants.[1]

    Policies of the 2019-2020 Militarized Vocational Training and Labor Transfer Action Plan

    In March 2019, the TAR issued the 2019-2020 Farmer and Pastoralist Training and Labor Transfer Action Plan (西藏自治区2019-2020年农牧民培训和转移就业行动方案, Xizang Zizhiqu 2019-2020 Nian Nongmumin Peixun he Zhuanyi Jiuye Xingdong Fang’an) which mandates the “vigorous promotion of military-style…[vocational] training,” adopting the model pioneered in Chamdo and mandating it throughout the region. [2] The vocational training process must include “work discipline, Chinese language and work ethics,” aiming to “enhance laborers’ sense of discipline to comply with national laws and regulations and work unit rules and regulations.”

    Surplus labor training is to follow the “order-oriented” (订单定向式, dingdan dingxiangshi) or “need-driven” (以需定培, yi xu dingpei) method, [3] whereby the job is arranged first, and the training is based on the pre-arranged job placement. In 2020, at least 40 percent of job placements were to follow this method, with this share mandated to exceed 60 percent by the year 2024 (see [2], also below). Companies that employ a minimum number of laborers can obtain financial rewards of up to 500,000 renminbi ($73,900 U.S. dollars). Local labor brokers receive 300 ($44) or 500 ($74) renminbi per arranged labor transfer, depending whether it is within the TAR or without. [4] Detailed quotas not only mandate how many surplus laborers each county must train, but also how many are to be trained in each vocational specialty (Ngari Government, July 31, 2019).

    The similarities to Xinjiang’s coercive training scheme are abundant: both schemes have the same target group (“rural surplus laborers”—农牧区富余劳动者, nongmuqu fuyu laodongzhe); a high-powered focus on mobilizing a “reticent” minority group to change their traditional livelihood mode; employ military drill and military-style training management to produce discipline and obedience; emphasize the need to “transform” laborers’ thinking and identity, and to reform their “backwardness;” teach law and Chinese; aim to weaken the perceived negative influence of religion; prescribe detailed quotas; and put great pressure on officials to achieve program goals. [5]

    Labor Transfers to Other Provinces in 2020

    In 2020, the TAR introduced a related region-wide labor transfer policy that established mechanisms and target quotas for the transfer of trained rural surplus laborers both within (55,000) and without (5,000) the TAR (TAR Human Resources Department, July 17). The terminology is akin to that used in relation to Xinjiang’s labor transfers, employing phrases such as: “supra-regional employment transfer” (跨区域转移就业, kuaquyu zhuanyi jiuye) and “labor export” (劳务输出, laowu shuchu). Both the 2019-2020 Training and Labor Transfer Action Plan and the TAR’s 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-2020) only mention transfers outside the TAR in passing, without outlining a detailed related policy or the use of terminology akin to that found in related documents from Xinjiang. [6]

    In the first 7 months of 2020, the TAR trained 543,000 rural surplus laborers, accomplishing 90.5% of its annual goal by July. Of these, 49,900 were transferred to other parts of the TAR, and 3,109 to other parts of China (TAR Government, August 12). Each region is assigned a transfer quota. By the end of 2020, this transfer scheme must cover the entire TAR.

    Specific examples of such labor transfers identified by the author to other regions within the TAR include job placements in road construction, cleaning, mining, cooking and driving. [7] Transfers to labor placements outside the TAR include employment at the COFCO Group, China’s largest state-owned food-processing company (Hebei News, September 18, 2020).

    The central terminology employed for the labor transfer process is identical with language used in Xinjiang: “unified matching, unified organizing, unified management, unified sending off” (统一对接、统一组织、统一管理、统一输送 / tongyi duijie, tongyi zuzhi, tongyi guanli, tongyi shusong). [8] Workers are transferred to their destination in a centralized, “group-style” (组团式, zutuanshi), “point-to-point” (点对点, dianduidian) fashion. The policy document sets group sizes at 30 persons, divided into subgroups of 10, both to be headed by (sub-)group leaders (TAR Human Resources Department, July 17). In one instance, this transport method was described as “nanny-style point-to-point service” (“点对点”“保姆式”服务 / “dianduidian” “baomu shi” fuwu) (Chinatibet.net, June 21). As in Xinjiang, these labor transfers to other provinces are arranged and supported through the Mutual Pairing Assistance [or “assist Tibet” (援藏, Yuan Zang)] mechanism, albeit not exclusively. [9] The transferred laborers’ “left-behind” children, wives and elderly family members are to receive the state’s “loving care.” [10]

    Again, the similarities to Xinjiang’s inter-provincial transfer scheme are significant: unified processing, batch-style transfers, strong government involvement, financial incentives for middlemen and for participating companies, and state-mandated quotas. However, for the TAR’s labor transfer scheme, there is so far no evidence of accompanying cadres or security personnel, of cadres stationed in factories, or of workers being kept in closed, securitized environments at their final work destination. It is possible that the transfer of Tibetan laborers is not as securitized as that of Uyghur workers. There is also currently no evidence of TAR labor training and transfer schemes being linked to extrajudicial internment. The full range of TAR vocational training and job assignment mechanisms can take various forms and has a range of focus groups; not all of them involve centralized transfers or the military-style training and transfer of nomads and farmers.

    The Coercive Nature of the Labor Training and Transfer System

    Even so, there are clear elements of coercion during recruitment, training and job matching, as well as a centralized and strongly state-administered and supervised transfer process. While some documents assert that the scheme is predicated on voluntary participation, the overall evidence indicates the systemic presence of numerous coercive elements.

    As in Xinjiang, TAR government documents make it clear that poverty alleviation is a “battlefield,” with such work to be organized under a military-like “command” structure (脱贫攻坚指挥部, tuopin gongjian zhihuibu) (TAR Government, October 29, 2019; Xinhua, October 7, 2018). In mid-2019, the battle against poverty in the TAR was said to have “entered the decisive phase,” given the goal to eradicate absolute poverty by the end of 2020 (Tibet.cn, June 11, 2019). Since poverty is measured by income levels, and labor transfer is the primary means to increase incomes—and hence to “lift” people out of poverty—the pressure for local governments to round up poor populations and feed them into the scheme is extremely high.

    The Training and Labor Transfer Action Plan cited above establishes strict administrative procedures, and mandates the establishment of dedicated work groups as well as the involvement of top leadership cadres, to “ensure that the target tasks are completed on schedule” (see [2]). Each administrative level is to pass on the “pressure [to achieve the targets] to the next [lower] level.” Local government units are to “establish a task progress list [and] those who lag behind their work schedule… are to be reported and to be held accountable according to regulations.” The version adopted by the region governed under Shannan City is even more draconian: training and labor transfer achievements are directly weighed in cadres’ annual assessment scores, complemented by a system of “strict rewards and punishments.” [11] Specific threats of “strict rewards and punishments” in relation to achieving labor training and transfer targets are also found elsewhere, such as in official reports from the region governed under Ngari City, which mandate “weekly, monthly and quarterly” reporting mechanisms (TAR Government, December 18, 2018).

    As with the Uyghurs in Xinjiang, overcoming Tibetans’ resistance to labor transfer is an integral part of the entire mechanism. Documents state that the “strict military-style management” of the vocational training process causes the “masses to comply with discipline,” “continuously strengthens their patriotic awareness,” and reforms their “backward thinking.” [12] This may also involve the presence of local cadres to “make the training discipline stricter.” [13]

    Because the military-style vocational training process produces discipline and transforms “backward employment views,” it is said to “promote labor transfer.” [14] Rural laborers are to be transformed from “[being] unwilling to move” to becoming willing to participate, a process that requires “diluting the negative influence of religion,” which is said to induce passivity (TAR Commerce Department, June 10). The poverty alleviation and training process is therefore coupled with an all-out propaganda effort that aims to use “thought education” to “educate and guide the unemployed to change their closed, conservative and traditional employment mindset” (Tibet’s Chamdo, July 8, 2016). [15] One document notes that the poverty alleviation and labor transfer process is part of an effort to “stop raising up lazy people” (TAR Government, December 18, 2018).

    A 2018 account from Chamdo of post-training follow-up shows the tight procedures employed by the authorities:

    Strictly follow up and ask for effectiveness. Before the end of each training course, trainees are required to fill in the “Employment Willingness Questionnaire.” Establish a database…to grasp the employment…status of trainees after the training. For those who cannot be employed in time after training, follow up and visit regularly, and actively recommend employment…. [16]

    These “strict” follow-up procedures are increasingly unnecessary, because the mandated “order-oriented” process means that locals are matched with future jobs prior to the training.

    “Grid Management” and the “Double-Linked Household” System

    Coercive elements play an important role during the recruitment process. Village-based work teams, an intrusive social control mechanism pioneered by Chen Quanguo, go from door to door to “help transform the thinking and views of poor households.” [17] The descriptions of these processes, and the extensive government resources invested to ensure their operation, overlap to a high degree with those that are commonly practiced in Xinjiang (The China Quarterly, July 12, 2019). As is the case in Xinjiang, poverty-alleviation work in the TAR is tightly linked to social control mechanisms and key aspects of the security apparatus. To quote one government document, “By combining grid management and the ‘double-linked household’ management model, [we must] organize, educate, and guide the people to participate and to support the fine-grained poverty alleviation … work.” [18]

    Grid management (网格化管理, wanggehua guanli) is a highly intrusive social control mechanism, through which neighborhoods and communities are subdivided into smaller units of surveillance and control. Besides dedicated administrative and security staff, this turns substantial numbers of locals into “volunteers,” enhancing the surveillance powers of the state. [19] Grid management later became the backbone of social control and surveillance in Xinjiang. For poverty alleviation, it involves detailed databases that list every single person “in poverty,” along with indicators and countermeasures, and may include a “combat visualization” (图表化作战, tubiaohua zuozhan) feature whereby progress in the “war on poverty” is visualized through maps and charts (TAR Government, November 10, 2016). Purang County in Ngari spent 1.58 million renminbi ($233,588 dollars) on a “Smart Poverty Alleviation Big Data Management Platform,” which can display poverty alleviation progress on a large screen in real time (TAR Government, February 20, 2019).

    Similarly, the “double-linked household” (双联户, shuang lian hu) system corrals regular citizens into the state’s extensive surveillance apparatus by making sets of 10 “double-linked” households report on each other. Between 2012 and 2016, the TAR established 81,140 double-linked household entities, covering over three million residents, and therefore virtually the region’s entire population (South China Morning Post, December 12, 2016). An August 2020 article on poverty alleviation in Ngari notes that it was the head of a “double-linked” household unit who led his “entire village” to hand over their grassland and herds to a local husbandry cooperative (Hunan Government, August 20).

    Converting Property to Shares Through Government Cooperatives

    A particularly troubling aspect of the Training and Labor Transfer Action Plan is the directive to promote a “poverty alleviation industry” (扶贫产业, fupin chanye) scheme by which local nomads and farmers are asked to hand over their land and herds to large-scale, state-run cooperatives (农牧民专业合作社, nongmumin zhuanye hezuoshe). [20] In that way, “nomads become shareholders” as they convert their usage rights into shares. This scheme, which harks back to the forced collectivization era of the 1950s, increases the disposable incomes of nomads and farmers through share dividends and by turning them into wage laborers. They are then either employed by these cooperatives or are now “free” to participate in the wider labor transfer scheme. [21] In Nagqu, this is referred to as the “one township one cooperative, one village one cooperative ” (“一乡一社”“一村一合” / “yixiang yishe” “yicun yihe”) scheme, indicating its universal coverage. [22] One account describes the land transfer as prodding Tibetans to “put down the whip, walk out of the pasture, and enter the [labor] market” (People.cn, July 27, 2020).

    Clearly, such a radical transformation of traditional livelihoods is not achieved without overcoming local resistance. A government report from Shuanghu County (Nagqu) in July 2020 notes that:

    In the early stages, … most herders were not enthusiastic about participating. [Then], the county government…organized…county-level cadres to deeply penetrate township and village households, convening village meetings to mobilize people, insisted on transforming the [prevailing attitude of] “I am wanted to get rid of poverty” to “I want to get rid of poverty” as the starting point for the formation of a cooperative… [and] comprehensively promoted the policy… Presently… the participation rate of registered poor herders is at 100 percent, [that] of other herders at 97 percent. [23]

    Importantly, the phrase “transforming [attitudes of] ‘I am wanted to get rid of poverty’ to ‘I want to get rid of poverty’” is found in this exact form in accounts of poverty alleviation through labor transfer in Xinjiang. [24]

    Given that this scheme severs the long-standing connection between Tibetans and their traditional livelihood bases, its explicit inclusion in the militarized vocational training and labor transfer policy context is of great concern.

    Militarized Vocational Training: Examining a Training Base in Chamdo

    The Chamdo Golden Sunshine Vocational Training School (昌都市金色阳光职业培训学校, Changdushi Jinse Yangguang Zhiye Peixun Xuexiao) operates a vocational training base within Chamdo’s Vocational and Technical School, located in Eluo Town, Karuo District. The facility conducts “military-style training” (军旅式培训, junlüshi peixun) of rural surplus laborers for the purpose of achieving labor transfer; photos of the complex show a rudimentary facility with rural Tibetan trainees of various ages, mostly dressed in military fatigues. [25]

    Satellite imagery (see accompanying images) shows that after a smaller initial setup in 2016, [26] the facility was expanded in the year 2018 to its current state. [27] The compound is fully enclosed, surrounded by a tall perimeter wall and fence, and bisected by a tall internal wire mesh fence that separates the three main northern buildings from the three main southern ones (building numbers 4 and 5 and parts of the surrounding wall are shown in the accompanying Figure 4). The internal fence might be used to separate dormitories from teaching and administrative buildings. Independent experts in satellite analysis contacted by the author estimated the height of the internal fence at approximately 3 meters. The neighboring vocational school does not feature any such security measures.


    In both Xinjiang and Tibet, state-mandated poverty alleviation consists of a top-down scheme that extends the government’s social control deep into family units. The state’s preferred method to increase the disposable incomes of rural surplus laborers in these restive minority regions is through vocational training and labor transfer. Both regions have by now implemented a comprehensive scheme that relies heavily on centralized administrative mechanisms; quota fulfilment; job matching prior to training; and a militarized training process that involves thought transformation, patriotic and legal education, and Chinese language teaching.

    Important differences remain between Beijing’s approaches in Xinjiang and Tibet. Presently, there is no evidence that the TAR’s scheme is linked to extrajudicial internment, and aspects of its labor transfer mechanisms are potentially less coercive. However, in a system where the transition between securitization and poverty alleviation is seamless, there is no telling where coercion stops and where genuinely voluntary local agency begins. While some Tibetans may voluntarily participate in some or all aspects of the scheme, and while their incomes may indeed increase as a result, the systemic presence of clear indicators of coercion and indoctrination, coupled with profound and potentially permanent change in modes of livelihood, is highly problematic. In the context of Beijing’s increasingly assimilatory ethnic minority policy, it is likely that these policies will promote a long-term loss of linguistic, cultural and spiritual heritage.

    Adrian Zenz is a Senior Fellow in China Studies at the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, Washington, D.C. (non-resident), and supervises PhD students at the European School of Culture and Theology, Korntal, Germany. His research focus is on China’s ethnic policy, public recruitment in Tibet and Xinjiang, Beijing’s internment campaign in Xinjiang, and China’s domestic security budgets. Dr. Zenz is the author of Tibetanness under Threat and co-editor of Mapping Amdo: Dynamics of Change. He has played a leading role in the analysis of leaked Chinese government documents, to include the “China Cables” and the “Karakax List.” Dr. Zenz is an advisor to the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China, and a frequent contributor to the international media.


    [1] See for example https://archive.is/wip/4ItV6 or http://archive.is/RVJRK. State media articles from September 2020 indicate that this type of training is ongoing https://archive.is/e1XqL.

    [2] Chinese: 大力推广军旅式…培训 (dali tuiguang junlüshi…peixun). See https://bit.ly/3mmiQk7 (pp.12-17). See local implementation documents of this directive from Shannan City (https://bit.ly/32uVlO5, pp.15-24), Xigatse (https://archive.is/7oJ7p) and Ngari (https://archive.is/wip/R3Mpw).

    [3] See also https://archive.is/wip/eQMGa.

    [4] Provided that the person was employed for at least 6 months in a given year. Source: https://archive.is/KE1Vd.

    [5] See the author’s main work on this in section 6 of: “Beyond the Camps: Beijing’s Long-Term Scheme of Coercive Labor, Poverty Alleviation and Social Control in Xinjiang,” Journal of Political Risk (Vol. 7, No. 12), December 2019. https://www.jpolrisk.com/beyond-the-camps-beijings-long-term-scheme-of-coercive-labor-poverty-allev.

    [6] See https://archive.is/wip/Dyapm.

    [7] See https://archive.is/wip/XiZfl, https://archive.is/RdnvS, https://archive.is/w1kfx, https://archive.is/wip/NehA6, https://archive.is/wip/KMaUo, https://archive.is/wip/XiZfl, https://archive.is/RdnvS, https://archive.is/w1kfx.

    [8] See https://archive.is/KE1Vd and https://archive.is/wip/8afPF.

    [9] See https://archive.is/KE1Vd and https://archive.is/wip/8afPF.

    [10] See https://archive.is/KE1Vd.

    [11] See https://bit.ly/32uVlO5, p.24.

    [12] See https://archive.is/wip/fN9hz and https://archive.is/NYMwi, compare https://archive.is/wip/iiF7h and http://archive.is/Nh7tT.

    [13] See https://archive.is/wip/kQVnX. A state media account of Tibetan waiters at a tourism-oriented restaurant in Xiexong Township (Chamdo) notes that these are all from “poverty-alleviation households,” and have all gone through “centralized, military-style training.” Consequently, per this account, they have developed a “service attitude of being willing to suffer [or: work hard]”, as is evident from their “vigorous pace and their [constant] shuttling back and forth” as they serve their customers. https://archive.is/wip/Nfxnx (account from 2016); compare https://archive.is/wip/dTLku.

    [14] See https://archive.is/wip/faIeL and https://archive.is/wip/18CXh.

    [15] See https://archive.is/iiF7h.

    [16] See https://archive.is/wip/ETmNe

    [17] See https://archive.is/wip/iEV7P, see also e.g. https://archive.is/wip/1p6lV.

    [18] See https://archive.is/e45fJ.

    [19] See https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/china-quarterly/article/securitizing-xinjiang-police-recruitment-informal-policing-and-ethnic-minority-cooptation/FEEC613414AA33A0353949F9B791E733 and https://www.hrw.org/news/2013/03/20/china-alarming-new-surveillance-security-tibet.

    [20] E.g. https://archive.is/R3Mpw. This scheme was also mentioned in the TAR’s 13th 5-Year-Plan (2016-2020) (https://archive.is/wip/S3buo). See also similar accounts, e.g. https://archive.is/IJUyl.

    [21] Note e.g. the sequence of the description of these cooperatives followed by an account of labor transfer (https://archive.is/gIw3f).

    [22] See https://archive.is/wip/gIw3f or https://archive.is/wip/z5Tor or https://archive.is/wip/PR7lh.

    [23] See https://archive.is/wip/85zXB.

    [24] See the author’s related work on this in section 2.2 of: “Beyond the Camps: Beijing’s Long-Term Scheme of Coercive Labor, Poverty Alleviation and Social Control in Xinjiang,” Journal of Political Risk (Vol. 7, No. 12), December 2019. https://www.jpolrisk.com/beyond-the-camps-beijings-long-term-scheme-of-coercive-labor-poverty-allev.

    [25] Located as part of the 昌都市卡若区俄洛镇昌都市职业技术学校 campus. See https://bit.ly/2Rr6Ekc; compare https://archive.is/wip/uUTCp and https://archive.is/wip/lKnbe.

    [26] See https://archive.is/wip/WZsvQ.

    [27] Coordinates: 31.187035, 97.091817. Website: https://bit.ly/2Rr6Ekc. The timeframe for construction is indicated by historical satellite imagery and by the year 2018 featured on a red banner on the bottom-most photo of the website.


    #Chine #transfert_de_population #déplacement #rural_surplus_laborers #formaation_professionnelle #armée #travail #agriculture #discipline #discipline_de_travail #Chamdo #préjugés #terres #salariés #travailleurs_salariés #Chen_Quanguo #Xinjiang #Oïghours #camps #pauvreté #contrôle_social #pastoralisme #Farmer_and_Pastoralist_Training_and_Labor_Transfer_Action_Plan #minorités #obédience #discipline #identité #langue #religion #COFCO_Group #mots #terminologie #vocabulaire #Mutual_Pairing_Assistance #pauvreté #Shannan_City #Ngari_City #surveillance #poverty_alleviation #coopératives #salaire #Nagqu #Chamdo_Golden_Sunshine_Vocational_Training_School #Eluo_Town

  • Coronavirus: 178,000 people given the all-clear in mass test sparked by asymptomatic port workers | South China Morning Post

    The programme was initiated after two male workers at Qingdao port tested positive for Covid-19 in a routine test arranged by their company on Thursday. Neither of the men – identified only as Dong, 40, and Chen, 45 – had shown any symptoms of the disease but were now in quarantine in hospital and receiving treatment, the health authority said. They had both tested negative in a routine nucleic acid test on September 8, but the positive results came after they had worked a night shift unpacking frozen food.As of 8am Saturday, 209 of the pair’s close contacts had been traced and tested for the coronavirus. All of them returned negative results but would still undergo a period of quarantine, the authority said.A further 232 people known to be close contacts of the 209 had also been identified and quarantined, it said. As well as people, about 21,000 frozen products and environmental samples collected from two Russian ships at the port were also tested for the coronavirus, and 51 positive results were returned.
    All of the affected items and others from the same batches had been isolated and not been released onto the market, the health authority said.
    As a result of the positive results, China would not accept import declarations from the two ships for a period of four weeks, the General Administration of Customs said on Saturday. Pets may be more susceptible to Covid-19 than first thought, study says. The customs authority last week suspended seafood imports from two firms – one from Brazil, the other from Indonesia – for a week after their fish products tested positive for the coronavirus.More than 12,000 workers at Qingdao Port, China’s second-largest for foreign trade, had been tested for the coronavirus since Thursday and more tests would follow, the health authority said.


    • As well as people, about 21,000 frozen products and environmental samples collected from two Russian ships at the port were also tested for the coronavirus, and 51 positive results were returned.
      The customs authority last week suspended seafood imports from two firms – one from Brazil, the other from Indonesia – for a week after their fish products tested positive for the coronavirus.

  • Coronavirus infections spike as seasonal farmworkers are blocked from testing - The Washington Post

    In Yakima County, Wash., some fruit orchard owners declined on-site testing of workers by health departments at the height of harvest season even as coronavirus infections spiked. In Monterey, Calif., workers at some farms claimed foremen asked them to hide positive diagnoses from other crew members. And in Collier County, Fla., health officials did not begin widespread testing of farmworkers until the end of harvest, at which point the workers had already migrated northward.At the height of harvest season, growers supplying some of America’s biggest agricultural companies and grocery store chains flouted public health guidelines to limit testing and obscure coronavirus outbreaks, according to thousands of pages of state and local records reviewed by The Washington Post.
    The pandemic redefined where essential work happens in America and brought recognition to seasonal agricultural workers under the H-2A visa program.
    At the same time, state agencies and growers were slow to determine how and when to test workers, what protocols to adopt when workers tested positive, and how to institute contact tracing, advocates say. They say that there should have been mandatory personal protective equipment and clear guidance on worker safety at the federal and state levels.Worker advocates say the failures put millions of workers at greater risk of contracting and spreading the virus among themselves and to other Americans as they crossed state lines to move with the harvest season. The struggles to contain the virus among migrant farmworkers are documented in internal state and county agriculture and health department records, as well as email exchanges with farm bureaus, grower associations, and public health and worker advocacy groups that were obtained by the Documenting COVID-19 project at Columbia University’s Brown Institute for Media Innovation through public records requests and shared with The Post. These documents and additional interviews by The Post show a pattern that extended across more than a dozen agricultural counties in 10 states — and that largely withstood officials’ attempts to stop the spread of the virus among agricultural workers.


  • The rise of the ’half-tourist’ who combines work with a change of scene | Travel | The Guardian

    Until the pandemic the term “remote worker” conjured up an image of a young hipster lugging a Mac around a co-living space somewhere in Bali or Berlin. But when coronavirus forced half of the UK to work from home back in April, a whole new cohort of people, who had spent their entire careers in an office, realised that working from different locations was a real possibility. Boris Johnson’s announcement on 22 September of a new set of Covid-restrictions that could last up to six months – including advice to work from home wherever possible, in a reversal of previous messaging – could well inspire many more people to adopt a nomadic working life.
    Destinations hit by the global halt in travel have already started to target nomadic workers to make up for the loss of tourist income. Barbados was one of the first to launch a “digital nomad” visa, in July. Since then, a wave of other countries have announced similar programmes, including Estonia, Georgia and Croatia. Most recently, Anguilla launched a visa scheme inviting visitors to live and work on the island for 12 months, “swapping grey skies and jumpers for tropical blues and daily temperatures reaching for the 30s”.
    The downside of these schemes is that they require proof of high earnings – at least €3,504 a month for Estonia, for example; US$50,000 a year for Barbados. Some also charge an application fee, and if you want to rent a villa in Anguilla you’ll need a very hefty bank balance. While the new working visas have garnered a lot of publicity, most remote workers are interested in shorter-term stints abroad, switching between periods at home and abroad – although anyone planning to decamp needs to check the constantly changing travel restrictions.


  • How India can contain coronavirus - Asia Times

    India should focus on controlling the spread of Covid-19 by imposing focused lockdowns in hotspots that threaten to negate the country’s containment successes, Dr Shiv Pillai, director of the Harvard Immunology Graduate Program at Harvard Medical School, told Asia Times in a telephone interview. Over a longer time frame, India’s best hope of controlling the runaway spread of the deadly virus would be injecting a significant number of citizens with the vaccines currently being tested in various countries. Dr Pillai expects approvals for vaccines to come before the end of the year.
    “It will be a silver bullet compared with what we have now,’’ he said from Cambridge, Massachusetts. “India is a great country to make vaccines. We have the two best vaccine-making companies in the world – Bharat Biotech and Serum Institute. They are also cost-effective.’’
    India has numerous pockets of high density across its 1.38 billion population, which makes it tough to contain Covid-19. Widespread lockdown fatigue and a lack of discipline regarding wearing masks, hand hygiene and social distancing is negating the tireless efforts of health workers and administrators in several parts of the country.“India is not Sweden, where you can tell people to stay apart. People have to go out, people have to work. Vaccination is the only answer,” said Pillai. “Fortunately, the deaths are not as dramatically high as elsewhere. Many [0f] the sick are recovering, including older people.’’Countrywide lockdowns had a severe impact on the economy, with the June quarter reporting a 23.9% contraction in gross domestic product. More than a hundred million lost their jobs and many workers had no option but to head back to their villages, inadvertently spreading the virus across the hinterland.
    India, which has 5.6 million cases, the second-highest number after the United States (7 million), has a fatality rate of around 89,000, much lower than than the US’s 204,000. Brazil and Mexico have recorded 137,000 and 73,700 fatalities from 4.56 million and 700,000 cases, respectively.


  • Foreigners not as wanted as before in Singapore - Asia Times

    Singapore’s success as a global business hub has hinged on its openness to global capital and labor flows, a formula that is under unprecedented strain in the Covid-19 era. The pandemic has put a spotlight on low-wage migrant workers often employed in the construction sector who account for around 95% of the city-state’s recorded 57,500 infections. Issues related to rising immigration and skilled foreign labor have, on the other hand, stoked a polarizing debate and stirred exclusionary sentiments, particularly toward professional migrants from India who some critics and netizens view as being overrepresented in well-paid sectors such as information technology and banking. “Attitudes towards middle-class migrants are similar to global sentiments under these pandemic conditions and are characterized by heightened xenophobia in many cases, seeing migrants as competing for scarce jobs and resources with citizens,” said Laavanya Kathiravelu, a sociologist at Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University.
    Opposition parties notably increased their vote share at the polls after pressing the PAP on immigration and foreign worker issues on the campaign trail. At the first session of Parliament since the polls, Leader of the Opposition Pritam Singh called for anti-discrimination laws to punish companies that discriminate against hiring Singaporean workers.
    Prior to that, in August, the government said it would raise the minimum monthly


  • Uncertain future for migrant workers, in a post-pandemic world | | UN News

    Gary Rynhart: When COVID-19 spread around the world, many migrants were shipped home unceremoniously or left to fend for themselves. Migrants have also – because of the sectors they work in, and the poor conditions in which many lower skilled migrants live and work – been vectors for spreading the virus. Examples we’ve seen include workers in meat factories in Germany, and construction workers in the United Arab Emirates and Singapore.
    UN News: are migrants more likely to have lost work, due to the economic crisis?
    Gary Rynhart: Job losses have often hit migrant workers hardest, because they are more likely to work in informal jobs which can lack safety nets, in case of job loss or illness. This is particularly the case for migrants in developing countries, and temporary migrants, such as seasonal workers, where social protection tends, at best, to be limited to work injury compensation or health benefits.Over thirty countries in the world get more than 10 per cent of their GDP from remittances. This money sent home by around one billion workers overseas or internally to their families is collectively higher than either foreign direct investment or official development assistance. It was almost three-quarters of a billion dollars last year. The World Bank estimates a drop of 20% this year. Families across the developing world are being impacting, creating ripple effects throughout their economies.


  • Coronavirus spurs discrimination towards Chinese, migrants, foreigners in Asia: IFRC | South China Morning Post

    The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) warned on Thursday that the novel coronavirus
    is driving discrimination towards vulnerable communities in Asia
    , including migrants and foreigners. The humanitarian agency surveyed 5,000 people in Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar and Pakistan and found about half blamed a specific group for spreading the coronavirus, with many mentioning Chinese people, immigrants and foreigners.“It is particularly concerning that both national migrant and foreign workers are blamed for the spread of Covid-19 as they are quite vulnerable already,” said Dr Viviane Fluck, one of the lead researchers and the agency’s Asia-Pacific community engagement and accountability coordinator.


  • The Guardian view on India’s strongman: in denial about a Covid crisis | Editorial | Opinion | The Guardian

    The pandemic is not Mr Modi’s fault, but he owns his government’s dysfunctional response. He imposed a draconian lockdown in late March with no warning and no planning. The prime minister seemed to revel in the drama of a primetime announcement and its muscular message. But the national shutdown, which ended in June, destroyed millions of people’s livelihoods. Many of the most affected sit on the bottom rungs of Indian society, who were forced with no notice to leave cities for distant villages. Although the national lockdown has been lifted, local versions continue in many states.
    One way of dealing with the economic crisis would be to boost India’s job guarantee scheme. The National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (NREGA) is designed to offer any citizen in rural India 100 days of work with (admittedly low) minimum wages provided by the government. The world’s largest public works programme kept India’s vast countryside economy afloat after the 2008 global financial crash. Yet Mr Modi resists wholesale adoption of the scheme and adequately financing it. Experts warn NREGA’s funding will run dry this month. Mr Modi appears unable to reconcile his dislike of a programme (it was introduced by his Congress opponents) with its obvious utility. Broadening and deepening the scheme – so that it could expand naturally to accommodate anyone who demands work at a living wage – would provide a timely fiscal stimulus to keep people in work when the urban economy cannot soak up labour.Mr Modi’s short-sightedness will cost India dear. The country’s second Covid wave may strike harder than the first. Initially its major cities, which have the best hospitals, were hit by the virus. Now cases are taking off in rural areas, which have poor medical facilities. With tax revenue a fraction of normal levels, regional governments struggle to provide more than symbolic care or relief. This has been exacerbated by the central government’s refusal to send states the money it owes to them. The cash trail is deliberately obscured and Mr Modi should come clean about Covid spending to dispel concerns about corruption.
    Rather than rebuild India’s social fabric, Mr Modi wants to build a panopticon. Critics of his government’s woeful performance have already been muzzled or locked up. A cold war with China blows dangerously hot in the Himalayas. To buttress support Mr Modi stokes Hindu nationalism. The temple ceremony is a way of stirring the emotions of Mr Modi’s fanatical supporters. It also reveals the depths of his denial about India’s Covid crisis.


  • Sur l’immigration, Gérald Darmanin durcit la ligne du gouvernement

    La DGEF devra mettre en musique les orientations du ministre, qui partage son portefeuille avec Marlène Schiappa, déléguée à la citoyenneté. A elle, les questions d’asile et d’« intégration républicaine », notamment par les naturalisations auxquelles elle veut redonner de la « solennité ». A lui, les évacuations de campements de rue, la lutte contre l’immigration irrégulière. D’un côté, l’humanisme, de l’autre, la fermeté. Cette scission du dossier migratoire étonne, tant ses éléments se recoupent : les personnes migrantes à la rue sont ainsi majoritairement des demandeurs d’asile et des réfugiés. Les premières dissonances entre les deux ministres n’ont d’ailleurs pas tardé à se manifester au sujet des travailleurs sans papiers mobilisés pendant le confinement (aides à domicile, éboueurs, livreurs, caissiers…). Le cabinet de M. Castaner s’était mobilisé au début de l’été, envisageant la régularisation de « plusieurs milliers » d’entre eux. Des préfectures avaient même été sollicitées en ce sens. Jusqu’à ce que le remaniement gouvernemental, début juillet, interrompe les travaux. Mais le projet n’a pas totalement été enterré. D’après nos informations, le cabinet de Mme Schiappa a envoyé un télégramme aux préfets à la fin de l’été, les invitant à faire preuve de « discernement » vis-à-vis des candidats à une régularisation ou à une naturalisation s’étant illustré pendant la crise due au Covid-19. A peine quelques heures se sont écoulées avant que le cabinet de M. Darmanin envoie un contre-ordre, rendant le texte de sa collègue caduc. Un premier couac à Beauvau. L’entourage de Mme Schiappa assure aujourd’hui qu’une circulaire est en préparation pour accélérer uniquement les naturalisations des travailleurs étrangers en situation régulière mobilisés pendant la crise.


  • Minima sociaux : quand il faut se battre pour quelques euros - Mathilde Goanec | Mediapart

    C’est l’histoire d’une petite descente vers la grande pauvreté, en raison de la grande complexité des politiques sociales. Pour cause d’imbroglios administratifs, nombreux sont les allocataires des minima sociaux à renoncer, nous rappelle le chercheur Philippe Warin. La réforme censée tout simplifier est pour le moment reportée sine die.

    Maëlle (prénom d’emprunt) a appris il y a déjà longtemps « à ne pas avoir de gros besoins ». Les livres de la bibliothèque à l’infini, un forfait à deux euros pour son portable, deux repas seulement par jour, et tant pis s’il faut vivre, à l’âge adulte, chez ses parents. Mais quand même, cet été, ne pas aller voir la mer à 50 km pour éviter le plein d’essence, cela l’a chiffonnée.

    « J’ai gardé, heureusement pour moi, une grosse capacité d’émerveillement et une bonne dose d’humour. Mais là, j’ai des droits, je cherche juste à les faire valoir, et ça me gonfle. » Pendant plusieurs semaines, la Bretonne a en effet dû batailler auprès de la CAF (caisse d’allocations familiales), un parcours administratif kafkaïen qui l’a laissée quasiment sans aucune ressource durant plusieurs semaines.

    Maëlle, titulaire d’un concours pour exercer comme bibliothécaire dans la fonction publique, est tombée gravement malade voilà quelques années. « Un accident de la vie, tu dégringoles très vite après ça. » Elle perd le bénéfice de son concours. Au chômage pendant plusieurs mois, la jeune femme finit par toucher début 2020 l’allocation spécifique de solidarité (ASS), versée par Pôle emploi pour les chômeurs et chômeuses en fin de droit.

    Février, les choses s’arrangent, en apparence : Maëlle enchaîne dans sa commune deux contrats courts de 10 heures par semaine, jusqu’au mois de juillet… dans une bibliothèque, son domaine de compétence et sa passion. Elle y intervient depuis longtemps comme bénévole. Les trois premiers mois, elle peut cumuler son salaire, qui tourne, selon les vacances scolaires (non rémunérées), autour de 300 euros, avec l’ASS. Pour tenir les mois suivants, elle demande alors, comme la loi l’y autorise, la prime d’activité, puisque son salaire est inférieur au RSA, le revenu minimum d’activité.

    Les ennuis commencent. Tel un serpent qui se mordrait inlassablement la queue, impossible de toucher la prime d’activité, car elle a touché l’ASS. Impossible de toucher le RSA, puisqu’elle a demandé la prime d’activité. « J’ai vécu un truc de fou, j’en ai perdu le sommeil, raconte Maëlle. Quel est l’intérêt de travailler ? Je me retrouvais plus pauvre qu’avant. »

    Toutes ces démarches sont recensées, avec minutie, par l’allocataire, sur un fichier informatique. « Je l’ai fait pour ne pas devenir zinzin, et garder le fil. » Relances, rendez-vous, coups de téléphone, mails sur l’interface administrative, les conseillers se contredisent, s’emmêlent les pinceaux, se renvoient la balle entre différentes administrations.

    En juillet, Maëlle touche 89 petits euros, sans plus d’explications. En août, la prime d’activité demandée des semaines plus tôt tombe enfin : 145 euros… amputés de 54 euros, pour cause de dette auprès de la CAF, suite à la déclaration d’heures travaillées en juillet. Elle contacte les élus de son département, qui se disent « effarés » mais restent relativement impuissants. L’assistant social de son secteur finit par lui débloquer un bon de carburant de 48 euros et demande une aide d’urgence de 145 euros pour lui permettre de tenir.

    Après un énième rendez-vous, fin août, une conseillère a neutralisé ses revenus passés, pour lui permettre de toucher enfin quelque 500 euros dus en juillet, et enclenché la procédure pour le mois de septembre. La commune où Maëlle travaille lui a également proposé de reprendre, sur un contrat cette fois-ci de cinq heures par semaine, jusqu’en décembre.

    « Pour le moment, je suis riche !, ironise la bibliothécaire. Mais l’assistant social de mon secteur m’a conseillé de rester prudente, car il est fort probable que lors de la mise à jour trimestrielle des revenus, la CAF recalcule le tout et me demande de rembourser une partie. La surprise est attendue pour le mois d’octobre ! » Or l’équation ne fonctionnera que si la CAF complète ces salaires qui font de Maëlle une travailleuse pauvre.

    Cette histoire n’est pas qu’anecdotique. Selon le rapport 2019 du Défenseur des droits, parmi les principaux organismes mis en cause dans les réclamations liées au dysfonctionnement des services publics, les mauvais élèves sont les organismes de protection sociale. Et en premier lieu les caisses d’allocations familiales.

    Dans le même rapport, le Défenseur des droits rappelle que « le droit de toute personne à vivre dignement, qui justifie également l’allocation de certaines prestations sociales telles que le revenu de solidarité active (RSA), cède devant la volonté, pour les organismes sociaux, de recouvrer des créances frauduleuses en ignorant la situation économique du public visé, souvent très précaire ». En clair, un excès de zèle qui plonge les allocataires dans la mouise financière.

    « Ces histoires sont malheureusement banales et le plus souvent cachées, confirme Philippe Warin, chercheur à Grenoble et co-fondateur de l’Observatoire des non-recours aux droits et services (Odenore). Dans les témoignages que nous collectons, beaucoup rejoignent ce côté kafkaïen que vous décrivez. Le système se veut depuis longtemps complexe, quitte à être dans l’illégalisme institutionnel, pour écœurer les publics. »

    Par ailleurs, le système social français est désormais conçu de telle manière qu’il a à cœur de coller au plus près des ressources des allocataires, jusqu’à l’absurde, dans le cas de Maëlle, pour ne pas verser un euro de trop.

    « Cette complexité, et la difficulté qu’elle entraîne pour que les personnes maîtrisent leurs droits et la manière d’y accéder, est source de non-recours, assurait encore très récemment la Dress (Direction de la recherche, des études, de l’évaluation et des statistique), dans une étude. Mais pas uniquement. Elle est source de coûts administratifs face à la lourdeur des dossiers à traiter dont certains ne mèneront à aucun droit. Elle est source d’erreurs et d’indus, pas forcément frauduleux, qui pourront mettre des personnes en difficulté lorsqu’elles seront conduites à les rembourser. Elle implique de multiplier les procédures de contrôle pour vérifier l’adéquation permanente entre les règles et les situations. Elle est source de méfiance, également, de la part des citoyens, par rapport à l’efficacité de notre système de solidarité et, plus largement, de nos institutions. »

    Une tendance accentuée par la difficulté des différents organismes à travailler ensemble, et au sein des différentes administrations à assumer une relation avec les usagers, à mesure que les outils numériques se développent. « Que ce soit les professionnels du travail social, ou les agents d’accueil des organismes sociaux, ils font très majoritairement le constat qu’on a atteint les limites des moyens disponibles, explique Philippe Warin. Ce qui explique des contradictions, et des conduites qui ne sont parfois pas acceptables. Il s’agit d’une forme de débordement du social au guichet, qui accentue les difficultés des professionnels. »

    La prime d’activité, pour ne parler que d’elle, revalorisée à l’issue de la crise des « gilets jaunes », a par exemple accru la charge des professionnels de la CAF, rapportait l’an dernier cet article de Marianne.

    Pour toutes ces raisons, une partie du monde associatif œuvrant dans le champ de la pauvreté avait accueilli d’un plutôt bon œil la promesse d’une simplification des minima sociaux, adossés au futur revenu universel d’activité (RUA), chargé de remplacer le RSA. Cette réforme, après une concertation plutôt tumultueuse menée entre 2019 et 2020, pourrait bien être l’une des nombreuses victimes de la crise sanitaire, renvoyée aux calendes grecques ou sérieusement amoindrie.

    L’enjeu est pourtant à la fois gigantesque en termes de protection sociale, mais aussi pour ses conséquences politiques. Maëlle, avec humour, se qualifie elle-même de « salaud de pauvre », en référence aux termes popularisés par Jean Gabin, dans un film de Marcel Aimé, La Traversée de Paris, réinterprétés dans la compilation de courts métrages au casting prestigieux, parue en 2019, sur les stigmates adossés aux « miséreux ».

    « Certains de mes collègues, comme Benjamin Vial, mettent en avant une forme de non-recours un peu différente, celle du non-concernement, chez les plus jeunes notamment, pas ou peu formés, note Philippe Warin. On sent tellement de mépris dans la mise en œuvre des politiques sociales qu’on n’a plus envie. Alors on se construit en dehors, en marge, au moins pour un temps. Certains vont en tirer profit en termes de dynamiques personnelles, d’autres vont s’écrouler. Cela pose nombre de questions sur notre lien au politique, et à la société. »

    #travailleurs_pauvres #droit_sociaux #non-recours #Caf

  • Coronavirus : en Inde, l’épidémie semble hors de contrôle

    La plupart des restrictions imposées lors du confinement général sont maintenant levées, à l’exception des écoles qui restent closes et des liaisons internationales qui demeurent suspendues. Mais l’atmosphère dans la capitale n’est plus la même, les lieux festifs et touristiques, les parcs, d’habitude si prisés, sont déserts.Les conséquences du confinement et de la crise économique qui frappe de plein fouet le deuxième pays le plus peuplé de la planète, avec 1,3 milliard d’habitants, sont désastreuses. La ville en porte les stigmates. Des magasins, des restaurants, des petites entreprises ont fermé définitivement leurs portes. Dans les rues de la capitale, le long des axes de circulation, les travailleurs migrants de retour patientent en quête de nourriture distribuée par des ONG, ou des particuliers.Le métro a également repris dans les autres grandes villes de l’Inde, mais, à Bombay, la configuration est toute différente ; il est marginal dans cette mégapole, où la desserte des banlieusards est assurée par des trains maintenus à l’arrêt. La capitale financière du pays, très durement touchée depuis le début de l’épidémie, vit sous une chape de plomb depuis cinq mois. Le confinement n’a jamais été levé et la ville, d’habitude bruyante et frénétique, est l’ombre d’elle-même. Les journaliers, les employés à domicile, les vendeurs de rue n’ont plus de travail et leurs difficultés risquent de se prolonger encore longtemps. Les autorités viennent d’annoncer que le confinement est prolongé au moins jusqu’au 30 septembre. Egalement située dans l’Etat du Maharashtra, épicentre de l’épidémie (940 000 cas), Pune laisse les experts perplexes. Cette ville moyenne, réputée tranquille, beaucoup moins dense que Bombay ou Delhi, comptant peu de travailleurs migrants, ou de voyageurs internationaux, figure désormais au rang des cinq villes les plus affectées du pays.


  • Naissance de la Fédération transnationale des coursiers (FTC)« Transnational Federation of Courriers » (TFC) - Gresea

    La Fédération transnationale des coursiers (FTC) est née le vendredi 26 octobre 2018 : un nouveau mouvement social européen initié par les travailleur.e.s de plateformes de livraison de repas chauds telles que Deliveroo, Foodora, Ubereats, Glovo, Stuart. Le bébé pèse tout de même vingt collectifs et syndicats nationaux, tous acteurs de la lutte ! Précoce, son premier cri a été : transparence des données et salaire minimum horaire pour tou.te.s les coursier.e.s[[Ces deux mots d’ordre font partie des nombreuses revendications communes répertoriées dans une charte transnationale pour le secteur, à publier prochainement. Les priorités seront à définir au fur et à mesure !

    La toute nouvelle structure est issue de l’Assemblée générale européenne des livreur.e.s intitulée « Riders4rights » organisée par le réseau AlterSummit [1] les 25 et 26 octobre à Bruxelles. Soixante livreur.e.s, représentants des collectifs nationaux et/ou syndicats issus de treize pays [2] se sont rassemblés sur ces deux journées ainsi qu’une vingtaine de représentants d’organisations syndicales, ayant statut d’observateurs sur la première session.

    Bien qu’atomisés par les plateformes, les collectifs de livreur.e.s ont réussi le tour de force d’unir leurs multiples luttes locales en une lutte à l’échelle européenne. La démarche de l’AlterSummit est simple : puisque les plateformes qui ont créé ces nouvelles formes de sous-emploi et de travail à la demande sont des entreprises multinationales, la seule riposte possible est bien celle d’une mobilisation transnationale. L’assemblée a permis deux moments essentiels : un échange entre les collectifs sur leurs expériences nationales respectives en matière de formes d’organisations, de luttes, et de revendications, suivi d’un passage à une charte de revendications communes. Une première action a eu lieu le 26 octobre en soirée pour fêter la naissance de la FTC : une manifestation à vélo des participants rejoignant la masse critique [3]. La nouvelle née prévoit, pour la suite, une série d’actions nationales simultanées dans plusieurs pays.

    La FTC pose ainsi une pierre importante sur le long chemin de la construction d’un mouvement social européen que Pierre Bourdieu appelait déjà de ses vœux il y a 20 ans [4].

    #Travailleurs_plateformes #Apps #Syndicats #Europe

  • Quand l’agriculture cultive la précarité | Santé & travail

    De plus en plus d’emplois agricoles font l’objet de contrats saisonniers. Un statut précaire qui s’accompagne de conditions de travail difficiles, dans un secteur où l’action de prévention n’est pas toujours aisée, notamment pour les organisations syndicales.

    La crise sanitaire due au Covid-19 a souligné combien l’agriculture française dépend des #travailleurs_saisonniers. Une dépendance qui ne se traduit pas malheureusement par de meilleures conditions de travail. Lancée au printemps 2020 par la Fédération nationale des syndicats d’exploitants agricoles (#FNSEA) durant le confinement et pour faire face à la pénurie de main d’œuvre étrangère, la campagne nationale « Des bras pour ton assiette » a ainsi attiré quelque 300 000 candidats… mais n’a abouti qu’à 15 000 contrats. Des candidats n’ont pas accepté les conditions proposées. Et des exploitants ont préféré attendre la réouverture des frontières et l’arrivée de travailleurs « détachés », réputés durs à la tâche et moins regardants sur leurs droits.
    En 2019, la FNSEA saluait des intentions d’embauche « records »… à 77 % pour des contrats de moins de six mois. « L’activité agricole ne baisse pas et l’emploi salarié s’avère même en augmentation, constate Jean-Yves Constantin militant FGA-CFDT dans les Bouches-du-Rhône et vice-président départemental à la Mutualité sociale agricole (MSA). Mais le nombre de CDI est en érosion avec des activités découpées en tranches saisonnières comme la taille, la cueillette, l’entretien en arboriculture. » La direction de l’Animation de la recherche, des Etudes et des Statistiques (Dares) du ministère du Travail a recensé l’an dernier 270 000 saisonniers agricoles, représentant un tiers des salariés de la filière sur la période d’avril 2018 à mars 2019. Une proportion qui peut aller jusqu’à 70 % dans certains secteurs, comme la culture des fruits.
    Pénibilité et faibles salaires

    Ce statut d’emploi offre peu d’avantages. Le titulaire d’un contrat saisonnier n’a pas droit à une prime de précarité, en fin de contrat. Il peut être engagé pour une durée minimale sans terme précis. Et, faute de délai de carence, son contrat peut connaître des renouvellements répétés pendant huit mois. Une telle flexibilité, ajoutée à la faiblesse des salaires – 95 % des saisonniers seraient payés au niveau du Smic, selon la CFDT –, peut expliquer les réticences de travailleurs à accepter ce type d’emploi, notamment ceux aspirant à stabiliser leur situation. Et ce d’autant plus que l’activité proposée est souvent marquée par une pénibilité importante.
    Le travail se fait par tous les temps, y compris pendant la chaleur estivale, accablante sous serre. Le ramassage au ras du sol, la cueillette en hauteur, le port de charges lourdes, les gestes répétitifs lors de l’emballage des fruits et légumes sont autant de sources de troubles musculo-squelettiques (TMS). Sans oublier l’exposition à des produits phytosanitaires, parfois sans protection. Avec, fréquemment, des journées à rallonge pouvant aller jusqu’à 12 heures. Des exploitants demandent à l’Inspection du travail des dérogations, pour allonger la durée de travail hebdomadaire à 60 voire 72 heures. Consultées localement, les organisations syndicales de salariés refusent généralement les 72 heures mais n’ont pas la partie facile pour jouer leur rôle de prévention.
    Lorsqu’elles tentent d’informer les saisonniers sur leurs droits, elles ne peuvent entrer sur les exploitations, propriétés privées. « Nous sommes attendus avec des bâtons, raconte Fabien Trujillo, délégué CGT dans les Bouches-du-Rhône. Un de mes prédécesseurs a été poursuivi par un 4 x 4. » Cette violence fait écho au meurtre en 2004, par un viticulteur périgourdin, de deux contrôleurs du ministère du Travail et de la MSA en mission de lutte contre le travail illégal. Dans ce contexte, l’action syndicale s’avère délicate. « Même dans des exploitations de plus de 50 salariés, il n’y a pas de représentants du personnel », déplore Ingelbord Bonté, secrétaire de l’union départementale CGT des Bouches-du-Rhône. « Je viens de négocier un protocole préélectoral, mais je n’ai aucun candidat. Les salariés ont peur… de leur patron et de ne pas savoir remplir leur mandat », déclare pour sa part Alex Mazauric, secrétaire adjoint du FGA-CFDT du Gard et président de l’une des Commissions paritaires santé, sécurité et conditions de travail (CPSSCT) du département.
    Dans l’angle mort de la prévention

    Compétentes pour les petites entreprises agricoles, les CPSSCT permettent des échanges avec les exploitants sur la prévention des risques professionnels. « Nous faisons tourner une formation gestes et postures de quelques heures, alliant la théorie puis la pratique sur les postes de travail, pour les salariés des entreprises volontaires pour éviter des invalidités, et nous espérons que les connaissances acquises bénéficient indirectement aux saisonniers », explique Alex Mazauric. Les TMS représentent 93 % des maladies professionnelles dans le régime agricole, et leur prévention constitue une des priorités de la MSA. Son plan santé-sécurité au travail 2016/2020 cible aussi la sécurité au contact des animaux dans l’élevage, où se produisent 56 % des accidents du travail, et l’exposition au risque chimique, qui concerne près de 10 % des salariés. Sans oublier les risques psychosociaux. En 2015, la MSA a dénombré 605 suicides parmi ses affiliés, dont 372 de non-salariés et 233 de salariés. Mais le nombre de suicides parmi les saisonniers agricoles de droit français n’est pas connu. La précarité de leur statut contribue certainement à invisibiliser aussi les atteintes à leur santé.

  • The Plight of Refugees and Migrant Workers under Covid - CounterPunch.org

    In Europe, where thousands of refugees (many from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan) are packed into camps, their lives already swamped by uncertainty, the fear of the virus hangs heavy. Lacking sanitation and essential services these overcrowded tarpaulin cities are unsafe; the Moria refugee camp on the Greek island of Lesbos, for example, was designed to accommodate 2,840, but now has 19,000 people; 40% are under 18, self-harming and attempted suicides are widespread. Compounding the heightened risks Covid has created, since July 2019 asylum seekers throughout Greece no longer have free access to the healthcare system, other than emergency support.



  • Academic marginalisation of Hong Kong’s ethnic minority groups increases amid coronavirus pandemic | South China Morning Post

    After several months of learning from home, the government has decided to start the new academic year online following a third wave of Covid-19 cases. Advocates have warned that the city’s poorest are being disproportionately impacted by the pandemic, as more than one in four children are believed to live in poverty. For ethnic minority children from low-income families, the challenges seem even greater. According to official statistics, people from ethnic minority groups account for about 4 per cent of Hong Kong’s population, excluding foreign domestic workers. Out of this group, Pakistanis, Indonesians, Thais and Nepalis registered the highest poverty rates.Amod Rai, a Nepali online teaching consultant, said it was essential to have teachers better trained at delivering online classes. “Teachers need to upgrade their skills on how to deliver content online, while schools should provide resources to help their students,” he said.
    “Among ethnic minority children, both parents tend to work and have little time. Online learning requires more support and the children need to be motivated. We need to work with the parents so they can understand how to help their kids.”


  • En Champagne, les vendanges face à la menace du coronavirus

    Cette employée viticole fait partie des dizaines de volontaires venus, en ce jour de la fin août, dans la salle des fêtes du village de Blancs-Coteaux, dans la Marne, pour subir un test de dépistage gratuit du Covid-19 à destination des vendangeurs. Cette campagne mobile, organisée dans plusieurs villes par le CHU de Reims et l’Agence régionale de santé (ARS) du Grand-Est, vise à prévenir les foyers épidémiques (ou clusters) lors des vendanges, dont la saison vient de commencer.
    Quelque 100 000 travailleurs saisonniers, venus de toute la France et pour moitié de l’étranger, essentiellement d’Europe de l’Est, sont arrivés en Champagne. Un afflux à haut risque face à l’épidémie due au coronavirus. « Comme il va y avoir de la proximité malgré les mesures barrières, le but c’est d’éviter que ça flambe dans les hébergements », explique Sandrine Dehec, cadre de santé au pôle biologie du CHU de Reims. Les infirmières préparent un test PCR sur un habitant lors d’une journée de dépistage du Covid-19 dans la salle des fêtes de Vertus à Blancs-Coteaux, le 20 août. Depuis fin mai, plusieurs foyers de contamination se sont déclarés dans des exploitations agricoles employant des saisonniers pour les récoltes maraîchères, notamment dans les Bouches-du-Rhône et le Vaucluse. Pour éviter que cela se reproduise avec les vendanges, la campagne de dépistage gratuit cible en priorité ces travailleurs. Mais ce sont précisément ceux qui viennent le moins. « Les vignerons viennent se faire tester, mais les cueilleurs, en particulier étrangers, on ne les a pas vus, constate Mme Dehec. Le problème, c’est qu’on ne peut pas les obliger à venir. Et, s’ils sont testés positifs, ils perdent leur job. » Une perspective inenvisageable pour une partie de ces travailleurs, venus gagner en deux semaines ce qu’ils touchent parfois en plusieurs mois dans leur pays. Les vingt-cinq saisonniers polonais et bulgares qu’a fait venir Alain (le prénom a été modifié) cette année pour vendanger ses vignes toucheront ainsi 1 500 euros chacun, soit trois à cinq fois ce qu’ils gagneraient chez eux.


  • Coronavirus: Vaccine front-runner China already inoculating workers - BBC News

    There are varying levels of experimentation. China has already confirmed it is involved in official, advanced trials of a vaccine on thousands of people in countries including the UAE, Peru and Argentina. This is part of a series of well-documented global collaborations between governments and pharmaceutical firms.Then there’s unpublicised trials. In what appears to be linked to the emergency powers vaccination experiments, and not the official phase three trials, a group of Chinese miners were refused entry to Papua New Guinea recently after their employer revealed it was using them for vaccine trials.


  • Frustrated Chinese travellers in Singapore show limits of border reopenings as Covid-19 rages on | South China Morning Post

    After two years in Singapore’s food and beverage industry, Chen – not his real name – said he was ready to return to his home country, but the new negative test result prerequisite for travelling was making him anxious.
    Singapore, with more than 56,000 cases though the bulk of patients have recovered, generally offers tests only to those showing symptoms. Late on Wednesday, it announced it would make tests available between Friday and next Monday to travellers to China, to align with the new requirements.
    Chen is not alone. As countries around the region ease open their borders in a bid to revive the ailing aviation industry, many would-be travellers have been left feeling confused and angry by what sometimes seem like daily rule changes by governments seeking to prevent imported infections that could trigger mass local outbreaks and force fresh lockdowns.


  • Coronavirus: Why Spain is seeing second wave - BBC News

    Healthcare is a competence of Spain’s 17 regions, and some are looking much better prepared than others. At the good end of the scale, the northern region of Asturias has an infection rate of 32, while Aragón in the north-east is topping 500. Aragón’s capital, Zaragoza, has become a hotspot for community transmission over recent weeks, but the problems began in the early summer when thousands of seasonal workers, many of them wandering migrants, began to travel to orchards in the region.


  • HK boarding houses linked to Covid-19 rebound - Asia Times

    The number of Covid-19 infections in Hong Kong rebounded to 62 over 24 hours on Tuesday from 33 a day earlier with more domestic workers testing positive after staying in boarding houses. On Wednesday, the Center for Health Protection said one case was imported and the others were local infections. Among the local cases, 28 have no known source. An Indonesian domestic worker, aged 35, was identified as infected on Tuesday, according to the center. She left her former employer’s home on July 24 and stayed with five other domestic workers in a boarding house on the seventh floor at Haven Court in Causeway Bay. She moved to her new employer’s home in Sai Kung on August 1 and was living there with 11 people until August 10. All 11 will be sent to a quarantine center. Separately, four domestic workers who stayed with an infected helper in a boarding house in Sheung Wan last month also tested positive. A 40-year-old Indonesian domestic worker tested positive on Monday. She was staying in an apartment in Quarry Bay to take care of an elderly person between July 16 and 23 after she left her former employer. She then moved to a boarding house in Cheung Hing Mansion in Mong Kok from July 23 to August 3, staying with at least 10 other domestic workers.

    She developed symptoms on August 2 but still moved to her new employer’s home in Tai Kok Tsui on August 3. She was sent to have a medical check and tested positive. Chuang Shuk-kwan, head of the communicable disease branch of the Centre for Health Protection, said the center was unable to track down close contacts of the 40-year-old Indonesian. Health officials called on police to help trace the contacts, but to no avail. Officers were denied entry by the owner of the boarding house in Cheung Hing Mansion.Chuang urged those who hired foreign domestic workers recently to find out if they stayed at the Cheung Hing Mansion. She said at least one helper who stayed there had tested positive.