September 17, 2008: The latest news on the case of the Vietnamese exploited by W&D Apparel in Jordan is that the repatriated workers have filed a petition with various government agencies requesting investigations and, if the findings warrant, prosecution of the labor export companies.
The petition points out over 20 violations of Vietnamese laws and breaches of contract. For example, close to 30 workers ended up in Jordan, even though there was no record of their ever departing to that country. Similarly, many workers signed up with and paid a labor export company to go to Brunei or Taiwan, only to find themselves shifted to another company and sent to Jordan. The petition is addressed to the prime minister, the minister of foreign affairs, the minister of labor, invalids, and social affairs, the People’s Procuracy, and the government’s chief inspector.
Boat People SOS continues to follow this case closely and look for ways to help the workers, who are desperate because of debts incurred trying to secure the very jobs overseas from which they fled. Many are deeply indebted to banks as a result of loans they took out to pay labor export firms the “stake” needed to secure those jobs. Some are in danger of losing their lands and homes as a result.