Foreign Construction Workers Overworked, Underpaid - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Foreign Construction Workers Overworked, Underpaid

Published March 29, 2016

Photos by
BenAveling/Wikimedia Commons

About 50 foreign construction workers were working far too many hours for far too little pay in north Iceland. A union official told reporters that “no one will get away with this kind of treatment.”

Vísir reports that 50 Polish workers brought to Iceland through the contracting company LNS Saga were working 68 hours per week for 1,200 ISK per hour. This detail by itself already violates a number of aspects of the standing collective bargaining agreement with regards to overtime, fair hourly wages, and time off.

LNS Saga reportedly brought the workers in through a smaller contracting company based in Poland. Aðalsteinn Á. Baldursson, the managing director of the labour union Framsýn, has a decisive outlook on the situation.

“No one will get away with this kind of treatment here,” he told reporters, adding that the union has since visited the company in question to show them, in black and white, what Icelandic labour law has to say about worker treatment.

Aðalsteinn said the union has added another supervisor to the work area, to help ensure that worker exploitation – which has been a growing problem in Iceland – can be stemmed.

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