A recent research has revealed the long-running exploitation of Indian immigrant workers tricked into coming to Australia on 457 visas.
Business Standard, 4 September 2013
Dr Selvaraj Velayutham published the research in a forthcoming issue of The Economic and Labour Relations Review in SAGE publications.
The 457 visa is also called 'Temporary Work' visa that allows skilled workers to come to Australia and work for an approved business for up to four years on sponsorship of the employers.
The research claimed that Indian immigrants have been long tricked into coming to Australia on false promises of good working conditions and higher pay packages.
They often had to borrow heavily to pay recruitment agents to come to Australia.
The research showed their employers were breaking Australian law by exploiting the skilled workers taking advantage of their debt bondage.
The research has found out that it is the 457 visa system that makes this exploitation possible as it restricts the workers to change their sponsors.
The skilled workers have reportedly signed two contracts. One in India prior to departure and an amended one presented to them upon arrival with far less favourable conditions.
However, they are not left with little option but to sign, having borrowed money to pay agents, airfares and visa fees.
Workers have also been complaining about unlawfully deducting sick leave from annual leave, despite medical certificates, long working hours without overtime payment, unsafe working conditions and physical and psychological intimidation by the employer.
Indian immigrants have regularly faced problems on denying to work under substandard conditions, like their passports getting confiscated, early termination of working visa and deportation to India.
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