Dominic-Savior Chukwu: How to avoid migrant exploitation in the Finnish labor market

by , under Enrique

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Dominic-Savior Chukwu’s BA thesis addresses some of the challenges that immigrants face when employed at a Finnish company. Apart from practical problems like understanding  the work contract that he or she will sign, some immigrants are apprehensive about demanding their rights. 

Chukwu’s states that some migrants come from countries where there are inadequate labor laws that don’t defend workers‘ rights or if they exist they are not enforced adequately.  ”Some prefer to be quiet for fear that they’ll get fired if they demand their rights,” he said.”This leaves many vulnerable to exploitation by the employer.”

According to Chukwu, who is a native of Nigeria, joining a union is one way of overcoming some difficulties at work.

Chukwu believes that another problem that some immigrants face at work is being treated as second-class employees.

”Since you are a foreigner, your opinion doesn’t count or doesn’t count as much as that of a white Finn,” he said. ”This is a very stressful situation for many migrants since it doesn’t empower them but encourages them instead to be apathetic of their rights.”

Chukwu’s thesis, Experiences of Labor Exploitation – Case study of some male migrant workers in Finnish facility service industries, highlights some of the challenges that immigrants face in the labor market.

The main conclusions of the thesis are:

  • Langauge barrier/inadequate language skills and lack of opportunities to learn Finnish or Swedish;
  • Ignorance of employees’ rights and law legislation/ignorance plays a big role in migrant workers exploitation by employers;
  • Fear of retribution from the employers/migrant workers fear retribution and therefore prefer not demand their rights;
  • Oversight of the authorities to the plight of migrant workers/authorities are not paying close enough attention to protect the well-being of migrant workers.

Chukwu’s thesis can be read here.

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