Tag Archives: slave workers

Cuban slave workers get paid one tenth of what imported foreign workers get for the same work


Cuba controversy over local and Indian wages
By Will Grant BBC News

Havana is becoming an increasingly popular destination for tourists
Walk along the leafy boulevard of el Prado in Old Havana and you’ll find it hard to escape the sounds of construction.
At least three major hotel building projects are under way along that stretch of the Cuban capital, including the renovation of the Manzana de Gomez, a former shopping mall being converted into a five-star hotel.
With tourist numbers hitting record levels this year, the need for new hotels is self-evident.
However, in recent days the Hotel Manzana building project has generated some controversy.
Not for its architectural style, which remains faithful to its early 20th Century European influences, nor for its budget or timing – it is due to be completed by spring next year.
Rather for the disparity in wages between different employees on the site.
Imported workers
The French industrial company, Bouygues, which is building the luxury hotel in partnership with the Cuban state, brought between 100 and 200 Indian labourers to Cuba to work on the project, Reuters reported earlier this year.

Tight regulations on how much foreign companies can pay Cuban employees mean that in essence the Indian labourers are being paid about 10 times the amount – estimated at between $1,300-$1,700 (£1,000-£1,400) a month – that Cubans are earning.
“It is normal practice for us to bring in our own teams to work on construction sites around the world,” a French foreman for Bouygues explained over coffee.
The foreman, who only gave his name as Franco, said he had travelled extensively with the company, particularly in the Middle East, and had almost always used teams of labourers who came into the country with the company.
But in Latin America employing such a foreign labour force is relatively rare and in Cuba it’s almost unheard of.

Continue reading Cuban slave workers get paid one tenth of what imported foreign workers get for the same work

Cuba Archive: Cuba’s state-run human trafficking business



 Ver versión en español abajo

Part I: Forced labor: the export services of temporary workers

“Contrary to fighting human trafficking, the government is likely “one of the largest and most profitable traffickers in the world.” This statement was part of the recent testimony in Congress[1] by Cuba Archive’s Executive Director, Maria Werlau, on Cuba’s gigantic human trafficking business.

A creative scheme of forced labor —temporary workers for export— accounts for Cuba’s largest, and growing, source of revenues. According to official reports, around 65,000 are serving the Cuban government in 91 countries; 75% (around 50,000) are in the health sector. The services of doctors, sports trainers, teachers, construction workers, entertainers, sailors, scientists, architects, engineers, and many other professionals and technicians are sold through large state entities, including two large health conglomerates (ServiMed-Servicios Médicos Cubanos, S.A. and the BioFarma Cuba group), and at least 84 smaller state entities (see http://www.cepec.cu/). Their wages, for the most part, go directly to the Cuban government, whose annual export services net of tourism grew from US$1.5 billion in 2003 to US$7.8 billon in 2011 (the latest official data from Cuba). Recent reports put the annual figure at around US$8.2 billion (three times tourism revenues reported at around $2.7 billion a year).

The violations to universally-recognized labor rights that this practice entails are numerous. Amply documented by Cuba Archive, they include chronic under-payment of wages, subsistence stipends, mandatory long hours, poor —often dangerous— living conditions, arbitrary restrictions of movement and others, retention of travel documents, and threats of retaliatory actions to the workers and their families if they defect overseas. This type of “modern slavery” violates many international agreements to which Cuba and most countries where these workers serve are parties, including conventions and protocols against human trafficking and of the International Labor Organization (ILO).

Cuba’s export business of indentured workers and its unique brand of “health diplomacy” are possible only in a totalitarian state in which a pool of guaranteed captive low-paid workers can be exploited as “exportable commodities.” The average monthly salary is $20 and $60 for doctors.

Because many Cuban workers serve “willingly,” —even eagerly— to improve their lot, it is important to note that the victims’ consent to forced labor practices does not exempt them from “human trafficking.” The legal definition is clear: “The consent of the victim to the intended exploitation is irrelevant once it is demonstrated that deception, coercion, force or other prohibited means have been used.” The Trafficking in Persons Protocol of 2000, a complement to the U.N. Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime, states that abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability for the purpose of exploitation constitutes human trafficking.

See congressional hearing and written testimony HERE


El tráfico humano, un negocio del estado cubano


El estado cubano “es posiblemente el mayor y más rentable traficante de personas del mundo.” Con estas palabras testificó recientemente ante el Congreso de los Estados Unidos la directora ejecutiva del Archivo Cuba, Maria Werlau,[1] detallando como Cuba administra el gigantesco negocio de tráfico humano a través de numerosas entidades estatales.
Un creativo esquema de trabajo forzado de trabajadores temporales de exportación constituye el negocio más rentable de tráfico humano del gobierno cubano y se ha convertido en la mayor fuente de ingresos del país. Según informes oficiales, alrededor de 65,000 cubanos trabajan para el gobierno cubano en 91 países, 75% (aproximadamente 50,000) en el sector de la salud. Los servicios de médicos, entrenadores deportivos, maestros, obreros de la construcción, animadores, marineros, científicos, arquitectos, ingenieros, y muchos otros profesionales y técnicos son vendidos al exterior por entidades del estado que incluyen dos grandes conglomerados de salud (ServiMed-Servicios Médicos Cubanos S.A. y el grupo BioFarma Cuba) y al menos 84 entidades estatales más pequeñas (ver http://wwwcepec.cu/). La mayor parte de sus salarios va directamente al gobierno cubano. La exportación anual de servicios, excluyendo el turismo, había crecido de US$1.5 mil millones en el 2003 a US$7.8 mil millones en el 2011, último año de
cifras oficiales. Según fuentes oficiales, dichos ingresos hoy llegan a $8.2 mil millones, lo que equivale a tres veces más que los ingresos anuales provenientes del turismo de alrededor de US$2.7 mil millones.

Las violaciones de derechos laborales universales que dicha práctica supone son numerosas y han sido ampliamente documentados por Archivo Cuba —incluyen salarios confiscados, míseros estipendios, largas jornadas de trabajo obligatorio, pobres y hasta peligrosas condiciones de vida, restricciones arbitrarias de movimiento y otras, retención de documentos de viaje y amenazas de represalia contra los trabajadores y sus familiares si desertan. Esta “esclavitud moderna” viola muchos acuerdos internacionales suscritos por Cuba y por la mayoría de los países donde laboran los trabajadores de exportación, incluyendo convenciones y protocolos contra la trata de personas y de la Organización Internacional del Trabajo (OIT).

El negocio de exportación de trabajadores al servicio del estado, incluyendo la renombrada “diplomacia médica” cubana, es posible sólo bajo un totalitarismo de estado, donde el universo de trabajadores cautivos y mal pagados puede ser explotado como un “producto de exportación.” El salario promedio mensual en Cuba es de unos US$20, y $60 para los médicos.

Ya que muchos cubanos se prestan para dichos trabajos “voluntariamente” o, incluso con entusiasmo, para mejorar sus condiciones de vida, es importante señalar que el consentimiento de las víctimas no exime al régimen castrista de su responsabilidad porque se tipifica igualmente como trata de personas. La definición legal contempla que “el consentimiento de las víctimas a la explotación es irrelevante una vez que quede demostrado el engaño, la coerción, el uso de la fuerza u otro medio ilícito empleado.” Asimismo, el Protocolo Contra la Trata de Personas de 2000, complementario a la Convención contra el Crimen Trasnacional Organizado, establece que ocurre tráfico humano cuando hay abuso de poder o de una situación de vulnerabilidad o a la concesión o recepción de pagos o beneficios para obtener el consentimiento de una persona que tenga autoridad sobre otra con fines de explotación.”

Ver la audiencia y el testimonio escrito, en inglés AQUI

After thousands of defections, the Castro brothers want their slave doctors to return

Colombia Cuban Doctors

The slave doctors, that are sent all over the world by the Castro brothers in exchange for hard currency, represent over $10 billion dollars a year to the dictatorship.  Until now, they were always threatened that if they defected, they would never be able to return to Cuba and their relatives would not receive permission to leave the Island.
But that has not worked, since thousands of slave doctors have defected from their ‘missions’ in Venezuela, Brazil and other countries.
Now, instead of threats, the Castros are begging them to return, get back the job they had before they left and everything will be forgotten:

From the AFP:

Cuba has decided to allow doctors who deserted while on foreign missions to return home without punishment or loss of position in the state health care system, the government said Friday.
The action comes amid worries of a brain drain of Cuban medical professionals as the Communist-ruled island loosens long-time restrictions on emigration.
Doctors in particular have faced stringent restrictions on travel since the 1960s, and stiff sanctions awaited those who deserted from government-sponsored missions in foreign countries.
Under the new policy announced by the ministry of public health, doctors who deserted while on foreign missions are being welcomed back.
They “have the opportunity, if they so desire, to rejoin our National Health System, and will be guaranteed work placement in conditions similar to those they had before,” a ministry statement said.
Likewise, Cuban doctors who have emigrated under a more open policy introduced in 2013 can also return, although with no guarantee of working for the state system.
In the past, deserters and emigres alike were barred from visiting the country for periods of five to 10 years, or even for life in some cases.
An estimated 25,000 doctors and a similar number of health professionals currently serve in international missions in 68 countries.
But the missions have been plagued by complaints about comparatively low pay and defections.
In recent weeks, about 100 medical deserters turned up in Colombia seeking to travel to the United States under a program adopted in 2006 during the administration of George W. Bush.
Although better off than most of the Cuban population, doctors make much less than their Latin American counterparts.
But the international missions allow them to make 10 to 20 times their normal salary, which in Cuba averaged 1,600 pesos, or a little more than 50 dollars a month, last year.
Cuba insists it still has one of the highest doctor-patient ratios in the world.
The island receives about $10 billion a year for the medical services it provides other countries, mainly Brazil and Venezuela, making it the top source of hard currency revenues.

Antonio Castro bodyguards attacked photographers filming him having dinner at a luxurious restaurant in Turkey

Lea la noticia en español: Martí Noticias

Antonio Castro, one of the sons of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, got upset when reporters in Turkey were taking photographs, while he was having dinner with a group of friends at a restaurant in Turkey.

Three of his bodyguards attacked photographers from a news agency for filming the younger Castro during his millionaire vacation in Turkey’s resort district of Bodrum on Wednesday, according to the Doğan news agency.
Castro had dinner at a restaurant in Bodrum with 12 friends, including some Turks, on Wednesday night.
As Castro left the restaurant at around 11 p.m., he noticed that he was being caught on camera by a Doğan reporter and went back inside in a rage, according to Doğan.
Castro went hiding in the restaurant’s kitchen for about a half hour before he went out and left the premises in his car, which was brought to the front of the restaurant.
After Castro left the area, a Turk and two Cubans, who were reportedly his bodyguards, punched and threatened the Doğan photographers, attempting to take their cameras.
One of then, Yaşar Anter, sustained a minor injury as a result of being punched.
While the two Cuban bodyguards fled the scene, the Turkish bodyguard, H.K., was briefly detained by the police.
A group of people who accompanied Castro at the restaurant also left in a van.
Castro recently came to Bodrum aboard his multi-million dollar 165 foot yacht from the Greek island of Mykonos and booked five suites at a luxury hotel for himself and those accompanying him.
And there are still ignorant people who think the Castrobrothers made a ‘revolution’ to help the poor!
While the slave workers in Cuba make an average of $20/month, the Castros live a luxurious life comparable with that of the world’s richest billionaires.
And all their money comes from dealing in stolen properties, drug trafficking, money laundering and slave trading of Cuban professionals for hard currency.

The Castros use Cuba as if it was their own farm and the 11 million Cubans as their peons.

Watch the video: