Amnesty slams Canada Soccer’s ‘deafening silence’ on Qatar’s migrant employee points – Nationwide |


2022-11-21 02:59:07

Amnesty Worldwide has lambasted Canada Soccer for shying away from addressing the “severe, widespread harms skilled by those that made this World Cup a actuality” in Qatar.

In an open letter to Canada Soccer, Amnesty congratulated the Canadian governing physique “for fielding a squad whose thrilling play and wealthy cultural range has already ignited the creativeness of the following technology of Canadian sports activities leaders.”

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However Ketty Nivyabandi, Amnesty Worldwide Canada’s basic secretary, urged Canada Soccer to take motion off the sphere.

“Your group’s deafening silence on honest compensation for affected migrant employees and their households is a failure of management and will go away an enduring stain on Canada’s re-emergence on soccer’s largest stage,” wrote Nivyabandi.

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Amnesty mentioned it has documented that 1000’s of employees, predominantly from South Asia, Southeast Asia and Africa, “have been subjected to labour abuses, abysmally low pay, and different exploitation.”

“Regardless of latest modifications to Qatari labour regulation, migrant employees nonetheless expertise delayed or unpaid wages, denial of relaxation days, unsafe working situations, obstacles to altering jobs, and restricted entry to justice. On high of the nation’s labour report, homosexuality is outlawed in Qatar – for instance, sexual acts between males are punishable by a jail sentence of as much as seven years – and Qatari regulation continues to deal with ladies as second-class residents in employment, schooling, and well being care.

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Calgary soccer fan who labored on Qatar World Cup committee prepared for journey of a lifetime

Canada Soccer issued a press release final month saying it supported “the continuing pursuit of additional progress relating to employees’ rights and inclusivity as Qatar prepares to host the world.”

“Whereas strides have been made in strengthening protections for employees by the Qatar authorities’s labour reforms, we encourage all companions to proceed the dialogue making certain these reforms translate to tangible enchancment in protections for employees’ rights and inclusivity throughout the nation past the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022,” the Canada Soccer assertion mentioned.

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“We consider {that a} legacy of this match needs to be to encourage and encourage additional enhancements on this space, not simply in Qatar however throughout the complete area.”

Canada Soccer mentioned it met with the Canadian Embassy in Doha in Qatar in April, July and September this yr, along with assembly and listening to displays from each the Worldwide Labour Group and Amnesty Worldwide.

“By our ongoing dialogue in latest months, it’s our understanding that Qatar’s authorized reforms, if absolutely applied, have the potential to have an actual influence and additional enhance protections for employees’ rights throughout the nation,” the Canada Soccer assertion mentioned. “We encourage all companions to proceed their efforts to implement latest labour reforms and proceed to deal with and resolve previous labour abuses.”

Amnesty was unimpressed.

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“Canada Soccer has apparently didn’t comply with up, elevating questions on your said dedication to upholding Canada’s ‘international status as a defender of human and LGBTQ2S rights,”’ it mentioned within the open letter.

Amnesty urged Canada Soccer, earlier than the Canadian males take the sphere Wednesday in opposition to Belgium, to affix the joint name by Amnesty Worldwide, Human Rights Watch, and FairSquare Tasks, a non-profit human rights group, for FIFA to to create a US$440-million Staff Compensation Fund for labourers and households “who suffered harms within the lead-up to the Qatar World Cup.”

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Amnesty famous that different federations, together with the English Soccer Affiliation, French Soccer Federation, Royal Dutch Soccer Affiliation and U.S. Soccer, have already endorsed a Staff Compensation Fund.

It additionally requested Canada Soccer to decide to assembly with Amnesty representatives within the subsequent 30 days to debate “our issues about Canada Soccer’s response to human rights violations linked to the Qatar World Cup” and “begin creating an motion plan that might see Canada Soccer emerge as a frontrunner within the area of sports activities and human rights forward of the 2026 FIFA World Cup, which Canada will co-host.”

“Management requires greater than treating employees’ rights as a procedural ‘field to be ticked.’ Thankfully, it isn’t too late for Canada Soccer to step out from the sidelines, be part of different worldwide groups on the human rights area, and develop into the worldwide participant it asserts it’s.”

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FIFA president assaults Western ‘hypocrisy’ over World Cup in Qatar

Canada Soccer didn’t instantly reply to a request for touch upon the Amnesty letter.

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Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Qatar’s emir, mentioned on Oct. 25 that Qatar has been “subjected to an unprecedented marketing campaign that no host nation has ever confronted.”

On Saturday, FIFA president Gianni Infantino defended Qatar’s immigration coverage and praised the federal government for bringing in migrants to work.

Taking selfies from the stands and sitting on the grassy pitch, 1000’s of migrant employees gathered in a Doha stadium to observe the opening match of the primary World Cup within the Center East.

The particular fan zone arrange on the industrial space on town’s outskirts included a stadium with an enormous TV display, and one other huge display arrange outdoors for an overflow crowd. It sat adjoining to a number of employee camps the place a lot of Qatar’s a whole lot of 1000’s of low-income laborers dwell.

“We’re right here to take pleasure in our sweat now,” mentioned Ronald Ssenyondo, a 25-year previous Ugandan who was rooting for Qatar on Sunday.

He had been in Qatar for 2 years, working lengthy hours below the solar to complete stadiums the place the match was being held.

“I’m simply overwhelmed with the issues I’m seeing now,” he mentioned.


— With information from Reuters

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