Overstaying migrants have been found in a backyard shanty town in West Auckland, living for as long as four years in makeshift sheds and a dilapidated caravan.
It is the latest in a shocking list of cases of foreign workers living in inhumane conditions in New Zealand, with multiple investigations already under way into the exploitation of migrants who came into the country under the Accredited Employer Work Visas scheme.
And while the Labour Party announced over the weekend it would offer a lifeline for long-term overstayers in New Zealand, the Indonesian tenants in the rundown shacks at a New Windsor property would not qualify because they had not been in the country long enough.
Auckland Council, which said it was not aware of the overstayers’ living situation until the Herald’s query, have made arrangements to visit the property and commence an investigation.
How on earth can an exploited migrant worker shanty town exist for 4 years an no one seemed to be aware of it???
One of the great pillars of NZs economic success is our exploitation of migrant labour.
The speed with which this exploitation has been rammed through with zero checks and balances has already been covered…
Immigration officers say they’ve been told to ignore criminal convictions and investigations, not to read supporting documents on visa applications, and not to check work visas at the border in a “light touch” drive to grant more visas faster.
Multiple past and present Immigration NZ (INZ) staff have told Stuff about their concerns with what they say is a completely dysfunctional visa regime that has allowed rampant fraud – including visa staff themselves exposing the flaws by using pictures of cats and dogs as supporting documents in a dummy visa application that was allegedly approved.
Stuff has since seen an email from a senior INZ official, Peter Elms, which admits that the AEWV visa has “been manipulated by bad actors”.
…the employers got their wish after screaming about the lockdown and rather than challenge this and demand better wages and work conditions for Kiwis, Labour has capitulated and given the baby its bottle.
National and ACT will compound this problem by opening the floodgates of immigration, removing the Foreign Buyers Ban and killing off Fair Pay Agreements so workers have no bargaining power.
ACT and National intend to slash MBIE by 30% when MBIE is the only one policing the exploitation so that there is no policing of it in the first place!
Since 2017, Labour has increased the minimum wage by nearly $7 per hour, or $556 a fortnight – that sort of fact enrages the NZ Business Community and they demand cheaper more exploitable workers!
The solution is to make every migrant worker a compulsory Union member, that’s the solution yet Labour are too spineless for that.
When we have such toothless ambition, exploitation will never end and only become deeply entrenched.
Increasingly having independent opinion in a mainstream media environment which mostly echo one another has become more important than ever, so if you value having an independent voice – please donate here.
If you can’t contribute but want to help, please always feel free to share our blogs on social media