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How A Danish Trade Union Is Empowering Migrant Construction Workers To Demand Equal Rights


How A Danish Trade Union Is Empowering Migrant Construction Workers To Demand Equal Rights

The transition period has been slow, but the changes and their effects are sustainable. The migrant workers who were beneficiaries of the union are now active participants in the struggle of the labour movement, upholding a collaborative solution wherein those in need of help and those initiating help work together. While earlier they would concern themselves mainly with issues of job safety and overtime pay, they have realised that the migrants have much broader problems that need to be addressed before they can even begin to talk about workers’ rights. Thus, they are now beginning to campaign for their rights when they rent a place to stay. This has been a major issue for workers who often find themselves in subpar living conditions, scammed by their own bosses or middlemen in the housing business. They are also ensuring that the workers and their families receive safeguards like healthcare and social security in time, which further helps their integration into Danish society. The Eastern European work culture of “Every man for himself” was at odds with the motto of “Equal pay for equal work” adopted by the BJMF and other Danish unions campaigning for labour rights.

  • The construction industry is one of the few sectors, which despite the coronavirus pandemic, has benefited from growth and was able to make high profits.
  • Upstream, our Team’s Circular Economy Experts help actors in construction to understand the changing political and policy environment that will result in new standards and norms for building materials.
  • According to Mathiassen, this was the most important thing they could’ve done to accommodate the migrant workers.
  • Every year, millions of people from around the world grapple with the European Union’s emerging migration management apparatus.

“Initially, there were many Romanian workers on the same construction site as me, and conditions weren’t great. Most of us didn’t know Danish or even English to know what was in the contracts we were made to sign.

Apprenticeships For The Construction Industry Of Tomorrow

They write new content and verify and edit content received from contributors. Available via annual subscription to one or more of CEIC’s global and premium databases. Aside from leading to rigidity among the activists, https://dailynationtoday.com/world/ the language barrier is also what causes the most stress to migrants. Even if the workers do want to learn Danish, the class timings often clash with their working hours, and finding evening classes can be difficult.

European Construction Sector Observatory Ecso

But few European employers campaign against bargaining coverage and threaten workers’ careers or predict job losses through relocation or closure if workers choose to bargain collectively. Organizing typically means internal recruitment, as workers are already covered by a collective agreement. In the United States, organizing involves both an adversarial campaign for the right to bargaining rights with a specific employer and a union membership campaign. This explains why we find higher bargaining coverage in Europe and why BMW and Mercedes-Benz workers, among others, have bargaining in Germany but not in South Carolina or Alabama. U.S.-style systems of majority recognition do not exist in Continental Europe. In most of Continental Europe, aggressive opposition to bargaining is relatively uncommon; thus, many countries do not have specific legislation addressing the issue.

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