Saudi Arabia: Haraj.sa app reportedly "facilitating exploitation" of "auctioned" domestic migrant workers; incl. comment from Apple
Date Reported: 30 Dec 2022
Location: Saudi Arabia
CompaniesApple - Other Value Chain Entity , Google (part of Alphabet) - Other Value Chain Entity , Haraj.sa - Other Value Chain Entity
Total individuals affected: 200Migrant & immigrant workers: ( Number unknown - Philippines , Domestic worker agencies ) , Migrant & immigrant workers: ( Number unknown - Kenya , Domestic worker agencies ) , Migrant & immigrant workers: ( Number unknown - Uganda , Domestic worker agencies )
IssuesForced Labour & Modern Slavery , Violence , Intimidation , Restricted mobility , Withholding Passports , Work & Conditions , Right to Food
Response sought: Yes, by Journalist
External link to response: (Find out more)
Action taken: Apple commented they prohibit such practices; Google did not comment.
Source type: News outlet
"How Ugandan maids are sold to wealthy Saudis on black markets," 30 Dec 2022
… listings are posted each day by Saudi citizens advertising migrant workers as available to buy or rent as maids, cleaners, nannies and drivers. Two hundred such listings have been seen by The Times.
[Haraj.sa]… is still available on the Apple and Google Play stores despite being criticised by the UN’s Special Rapporteurs in 2020 for facilitating modern slavery...
Every seller who spoke to The Times admitted they had been withholding their worker’s passports. Two admitted to physically disciplining their workers if they “spoke back”, and dozens said they expected their maids to work day and night without breaks for as little as £5 a day...
The Labour Laws Awareness Initiative, a Kenyan-based helpline for domestic workers in the Middle East, said it received reports of Saudi sponsors illegally selling or renting their domestic workers without official permission “every single day”, as well as hundreds of calls each month from workers reporting abuse...
Apple said: “We strictly prohibit the solicitation or promotion of illegal behaviour, including human trafficking and child exploitation, in the App Store and across every part of our business. We take any accusations or claims around this behaviour very seriously.”
Google declined to comment. Haraj, Saudi Arabia’s human rights commission and the government have been contacted for a response.