Sunday, June 26, 2011

abuse in Irbid

It seems that Qualified Industrial Zones are law unto themselves. There have been many stories over the years about abuse in the factories set up there to take advantage of the Free Trade Agreement between Jordan and the USA. There are thousands of Sri Lankan, Bangldeshi and Chinese women who are slave labour in these factories owned by foreigners. Hardly any Jordanians work in these places as the wages are so low.

Recently a USA human rights organisation wrote a report on the sexual abuse in one particular factory. They have just visited Jordan and liaised with the Family Protection Department (the police department which specialises in sexual offences) and one brave Bangladeshi woman made a statement and identified the alleged offender and he was arrested but, unfortunately, the prosecutor set him free two days later. I am hoping that he will face the charge. Of course he is innocent until proven guilty and the charge of rape is a very difficult to prosecute especially where there is no forensic evidence.

Whatever comes of this case I hope the Jordanian authorities will take a closer interest in the rights of these foreign workers in Jordan who are used and abused seemingly at will. Of course the revenue that is brought in to Jordan is large so there may be hesitation in pushing forward an inquiry. Pressure should be put on the Ministry of Labour and the companies that use these goods like Walmart, Land's End and Gap.


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home