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Daily Archives: 22. May 2023 − News & Stories


Black labour in Lon­gye­ar­by­en

Employ­ment rela­ti­ons in the grey or even black zone do also exist in Lon­gye­ar­by­en. Recent­ly, the regio­nal employ­ment pro­tec­tion agen­cy made con­trols in Lon­gye­ar­by­en and, in a num­ber of cases, found evi­dence for black labour. Employees con­cer­ned are main­ly of non-Nor­we­gi­an ori­gin, and often employ­ed in house clea­ning. Employees were found to have work­ed more hours than they were (offi­ci­al­ly) get­ting paid for, and wages were often well below usu­al levels. Accor­ding to Sval­bard­pos­ten, 50 kro­ner (curr­ent­ly appro­xi­m­ate­ly 4.25 Euro9 were paid per hour, while Nor­we­gi­an stan­dard wages would be at least 205 kro­ner (17.42 Euro).

The employ­ment pro­tec­tion agen­cy can only rise atten­ti­on and bring cases to the atten­ti­on of rele­vant aut­ho­ri­ties, such as the tax aut­ho­ri­ty. Ano­ther dif­fi­cul­ty is that some rele­vant Nor­we­gi­an legis­la­ti­on is not in force in Sval­bard. Due to the Spits­ber­gen Trea­ty sys­tem, not all Nor­we­gi­an laws are auto­ma­ti­cal­ly in force in Sval­bard, but they have to be brought into force expli­cit­ly by Nor­we­gi­an legis­la­tors.

The­re are, of cour­se, house clea­ning busi­nesses in Lon­gye­ar­by­en that take care well of their employees and respect both legis­la­ti­on and reasonable ethi­cal stan­dards. Some of the­se com­pa­nies are now rai­sing cri­ti­cism against their grey-zone com­pe­ti­tors and against the lack of enthu­si­asm on behalf of the Nor­we­gi­an govern­ment. Gus­tav Hals­vik, direc­tor of ISS, is quo­ted say­ing that he thinks of the lack of action of Nor­we­gi­an aut­ho­ri­ties as public racism, con­side­ring that Nor­we­gi­an employees are hard­ly con­cer­ned.

Longyearbyen, Spitzbergen: black labour

Black labourn exists in Lon­gye­ar­by­en not only within house clea­ning, but for exam­p­le also in the cate­ring trade. The cook of this deli­cious meal was most likely not get­ting paid accor­ding to stan­dard wages!

Simi­lar pro­blems are known to exist in Lon­gye­ar­by­en also in indus­tries such as trans­por­ta­ti­on, buil­ding and restau­rants.

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News-Listing live generated at 2023/September/28 at 04:55:01 Uhr (GMT+1)
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