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Oct. 25  2021
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Continual Violence Against MWs Where Is the End?

The cruelty of the intended violence was even worse. Several workers were stabbed with a knife and doors were forced open by using iron bars to find those frightened migrant workers who had hidden themselves inside the dormitory.

Source  :  Asian Workers News No. 135 (August 4th , 2002)

By Lee Min-jun, Staff Reporter of Asia Workers News


Migrant workers, who had not been paid for a long time, were physically assaulted when they protested about their delayed wages. One of the workers, who had been previously injured in an industrial accident, hurt himself and had to have surgery after falling from the dormitory window to avoid the violence. This happened at the Nam Yang Chemical Co., Ltd.

The cruelty of the intended violence was even worse. Several workers were stabbed with a knife and doors were forced open by using iron bars to find those frightened migrant workers who had hidden themselves inside the dormitory.
After finding out about the incident, Ansan Migrant Shelter held a protest assembly in front of Nam Yang Chemical Co. on July 12, at 4pm. Some migrant workers held pickets saying, " Koreans used a knife on us, we are very fearful of them." They also handed out fliers saying, "This time they assaulted us using hooks and knives. We hate Dae Han Min Guk."

It was not easy to decide if I should write this article because the violence against migrant workers and protest about it have been written about several times. I was hoping to write an article that was somewhat hopeful and bright, as I did with my last report about the news of migrant workers holding a public assembly, which including voicing their concerns on cultural properties. Unfortunately however, we are still hearing and seeing many cases related to violence.
Recently, some members of the press have dealt with news of migrant workers supporting Koreans and being pleased with our success during the World Cup. It's surely a good thing that we shared that international event with them. Moreover I'm relieved when some migrant workers say that they felt 'human nature' during the period, in spite of going through unjust treatment here other times.
However, the other side of the news in the press, regarding migrant workers, seems to be cold hearted, but makes use of them as material anyway. Although their intention is to make it look like the success of the World Cup was for All, not just Koreans, my guess is that they use such news items to dispel arguments and concerns that the frantic cheering during the World Cup was accepted as 'the craziness of Nationalism'.

My desire is for the press to be concerned about migrant workers lives and their situation all the time, so that my worries become needless. The public never knows about the cruel violence, like that described above, still being committed in our society because they perceive and accept that migrant workers lives had been improved, as depicted by the press. Accordingly, they have a picture of migrant workers being satisfied with Korean's kind treatment, living decent lives here and being able to be happy and join in with Korea's national celebrations.
As the matter of fact, that's the reality that should be publicized by the press. When it comes to the responsibility of the press, it has to investigate the reasons causing these incidents and correct them as soon as possible.
*Protest calls to Nam Yang Chemical Co. Ltd. can be made on: 031-499-2615
2002 / -0 / 9-
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