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Research by international human rights organizations have described the worst forms of labor abuse and dehumanization among low income earners like domestic and construction workers in the United Arab Emirates. For example, the worst form of exploitation is the “Kafala” sponsorship program that gives sponsors and employers authority to determine the immigrants’ legal residence (Chalcraft, 2011). According to Sonnez, Apostolopoulos, Tran & Rentrope (2011), employers are given the authority to control migrant workers pay, living conditions, and ability to renew or terminate their contracts without regard to the country’s labor laws.
Another form of human right violation is debt bondage and confiscation of passports because migrant workers have been charged high recruitment fees by their home agencies. Violation comes in because the migrants are promised high salaries but on arrival they wages are too low ranging from $175 to $220 per month. A report by Human Rights Watch (2012) indicates that construction workers live in inhumane conditions, with eight to ten laborers sharing a room because of poverty and debt. For instance, they were expected to work for more than 12 hours per day with very few breaks even under extreme heat of the day (Exploited Workers Building Island of Happiness, 2009).
The poor wages and increased cases of abuse thrive because of the political environment which has continuously ignored the need for establishing labor unions and enforcing legal action on abusers. Lack of labor unions limits migrants’ choices, rights to expression, ability to seek justice and freedom to move from one employer to another equating the situation to modern day slavery. These limitations have led to increased cases of suicides among immigrants who find themselves in fixed inhumane environment.
A 2009 police report indicated that 113 migrants committed suicide with the most victims coming from domestic and
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This section seeks to show what exactly are these human rights, establish why and how they entered into the international political process since WWII, highlight any changes that might have occurred in the character of international relations as well as ascertain the actor that is best suited to pursue international human rights while analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of each actor.
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