19. Juni 2018 · Kommentare deaktiviert für Huelva Gate : Morocco must review its sending regulations, says Andalusia Workers Syndicate · Kategorien: Marokko, Spanien · Tags: ,

Yabiladi | 18.06.2018

For Spanish trade unionists, the Moroccan and Spanish authorities must review contracts concluded to send strawberry pickers to Huelva. At the heart of the Huelva Gate, Moroccan women’s rights associations share the same stance.

In Spain, several Moroccan women have decided to put an end to their silence, revealing shocking accounts about sexual and labor abuses in Huelva’s strawberry fields. With the help of Spanish activists and trade unionists they have been able to lodge complaints against their alleged assaulters.

They have even rallied on Sunday, telling the world about their ordeal, in an attempt to change a situation they called degrading and humiliating.

Reviewing contracts

Contacted by Yabiladi on Monday, Oscar Reina, head of the Andalusia Workers Syndicate (SAT), insisted that the Moroccan and Spanish governments should review the conditions in which strawberry pickers work and the terms and conditions of the contracts they sign to come to Spain.

One day after organizing a march in Huelva to say «stop to the abuse in the strawberry fields», Oscar Reina reported that more than 2,000 people took their anger and frustration to the streets.

One month after the Huelva Gate scandal erupted, the Spanish trade unionist explained to Yabiladi that the battle had just begun. Indeed, in a statement issued Sunday, SAT revealed the next moves it is planning to make in order to help Moroccan farm workers in Spain.

According to Oscar Reina, when it comes to this case, both parties should reconsider their own procedures and regulations. Most precisely, Reina said that «the Moroccan and Spanish governments must look into all these contracts».

Shouldering responsibilities

«We are definitely for regulations that go hand in hand with the work of these people. Otherwise women will end up working for 20 days instead of 90 and will be paid 36 Euros instead of 40», argued José Antonio spokesperson for SAT. Some of them even work for 12 hours, he added.

In fact, most of the Moroccan women coming to Spain are unable to read the contracts set up by the National Agency for Employment and Skills Promotion (ANAPEC) and the Spanish Ministry of Labor, said José Antonio.

Once in Huelva, they don’t know what to expect and find themselves trapped. To overcome this situation, support is the only answer, said Oscar Reina. «Before arriving in Spain, they must be informed clearly about their working conditions», added the Spanish activist.

Moroccan women’s rights associations

Back to Morocco, four Moroccan women associations have been closely following the developments of the situation of Moroccan strawberry pickers in Huelva.

The Federation of Women’s Rights Leagues, the Union of Feminine Action, Jossour Forum des Femmes Marocaines, and the Moroccan Association for combating violence against women have all collaborated to act on the file here in Kingdom, Latifa Bouchoua president of the Federation of Women’s rights Leagues told Yabiladi on Monday.

«Before issuing a communiqué on the matter we sent a letter to the Ministries of Employment and Vocational Training and of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation on the 24th of May», said Bouchoua.

For the women’s rights activist the «Moroccan government has to shoulder its responsibilities, protecting these women and assisting them, especially those who lodged complaints against their alleged assaulters».

Moreover, she believes that «the government must rethink of their working conditions».

A member of the Federation of Women’s Rights Leagues attended the march held yesterday, Sunday 17th of June, in Seville, showing support for the women who had the courage to rally for their dignity and rights.

For the record, two of the Moroccan women who lodged complaints against their alleged assaulters in Huelva guided a crowd of more than 2,000 people yesterday in Huelva. Covering their faces, they made their voices heard, denouncing abuse.

They testified before thousands of people and did not hesitate to speak to international media.

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