Photo credit: The Guardian

A research has revealed that migrant workers who on shipping vessels in the UK are often taken advantage of.

The Guardian reports that the workers are overworked – some work up to 20 hour shifts and some are physically abused.

The migrant workers are generally not allowed to disembark the vessels to seek help.

The researchers from the University of Nottingham Rights Lab found out that the average salary of the workers is a miserly £3.51 per hour.

When the migrant workers on fishing boats were interviewed, it showed many of them experienced racism and “extreme violence”.

The workers are from various countries like the Philippines, India, Ghana, Sri Lanka and Indonesia. They get employment into the UK fishing industry on “transit visas” which is an ambiguity that makes their exploitation lawful.

The visas force workers into an alleyway because they are tied to a single employer.

They are, of course, left to the whims and caprices of ship captains on whom they are dependent.

The migrant workers are at the mercy of ship captains for their working and living situations. They are prevented from changing jobs.

However, due to the scope of the research, it could not be generalized across the industry.

But in a related development, the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) made known its own findings. It posited that the use of transit visas led to the exploitation of migrants’ labor aboard UK vessels. It called for a closure of the inadequacies which allow the visas to be issued.

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