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Artikel

17 Sep 2021

Autor*in:
Yasmena Al Mulla, Migrant-Rights.org

Kuwait: Unable to unionise, transport workers form member groups to counter discrimination & labour abuse, incl. non-payment of wages & high driver fees

Kuwait City

"Transportation workers in Kuwait: At the wheel, thrown under the bus," 16 Sep 2021

As the global health crisis shined a light on institutional and systemic issues that have plagued various industries...

And with the poor management and corruption that has infested the transportation industry, migrants working in the sector are the most affected...

Bus drivers are seen as royalty in the eyes of transportation workers because they are the only ones that have a fixed salary and accommodation provided by the company – but they still work long hours, around 12 hours a day,  and are paid low wages...

taxi drivers do not have the luxury of a fixed salary. They earn a daily wage based on the number of trips they complete... The driver pays the taxi company between KD7.5 to 8 in fees every day... the driver has to carry the fuel cost...

During the lockdown, taxi drivers, “even though they were forced to stop working, their employers [taxi companies] still forced them to pay the daily fee,” Alwain Jose, a member of Kuwait Society for Human Rights, stated...

Issues like withholding salaries and forcing taxi drivers to pay high daily fees have left several transportation workers vulnerable...

informal associations have been established, [yet] the inability to legally register a union means that these workers cannot lobby for their rights or demand changes to better their livelihood.