So, what have we been up to the past month?
After a long process of daily data gathering and tracking, we finally published our first annual report regarding work accidents in all sectors of the workforce. Our constant work with the Israeli authorities made it possible for refugees who are also human trafficking victims to retroactively obtain all the deposit money that was deducted from their salaries. And lastly, with our help, one caregiver was able to bid a last farewell to his wife prior to his passing.
Aside from those achievements, this month we saw initial attempts of the economic adviser to the prime minister, prof. Avi Simhon, to promote a harmful initiative directed towards migrant workers and their rights. With the intention to cut down benefits and lower minimum wages, Simhon clearly doesn't show much interest in labour laws and international treaties. We'll continue tracking this story and keep you posted on any additional developments.
2019 marks the highest number of fatal work accidents in the last two decades: 
We're thrilled to announce the publication of our first-ever annual report dedicated to work accidents in all sectors of the workforce. In previous years, the focus was only on work accidents in the construction sector, whereas this year we collected data from all sectors. Our team gathered the information daily, using official announcements about work accidents from sources such as the MDA (Israeli Red Cross) and the Israeli police. The data found in the report shows the following: 86 workers were killed in the past year. Another 352 workers were moderately and severely injured. These findings reveal a 23% increase in the number of deaths since 2018 - the highest in the last two decades, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
Unfortunately, the measures taken in order to prevent the horrific accidents are essentially nonexistent. In the construction sector, the deadliest of them all, no financial sanctions were imposed on the responsible contractors. Dangerous construction sites in which workers were severely injured or killed are operating normally. More importantly there is still a significant lack of official inspectors- a Israel never properly regulated the inspectors to workers ratio. That positions Israel in a state of overwhelming under-allocation of inspectors, a situation unacceptable in developed countries. Read the full report here [in Hebrew].

Refugees who are also human trafficking victims will be refunded with their deposit money:
We have told much about the deposit law: how it legalizes the deduction of 20% from the salaries of refugees. In a recent development from 2018, the Knesset’s Interior Affairs Committee concluded that specific populations are exempt from the cruelty of the law. The meaning of this is that the specific populations should be refunded with the past deductions taken from their salaries.
One of those populations is trafficking victims within the refugee population. The common story of the victims is being kidnapped and tortured in Sinai, on their way to Israel, as a measure to demand ransom from their families. Although the deposit does not apply to them anymore, Kav LaOved witnessed many cases of human trafficking victims who never received a full refund as they should. The reason for that lies in the Population & Immigration Authority offices, where they decided to refund refugees only after they were officially recognized as human trafficking victims. Only after Kav LaOved stepped in, the Population & Immigration Authority finally changed its decision and ordered to fully refund all human trafficking victims retroactively. For them, this mere bureaucratic step translates directly into electricity, food and the ability to survive yet another day. To read the full story click here [in Hebrew].
A caregiver gets to see his wife one last time before his death:
This incident tells the story of the caregiving sector: a sector filled with complex conflicts and human tragedies to the brim. Not only caregivers have to deal with the difficulties of working away from home in a very demanding workplace, but they must also endure the draconian Israeli immigration policies.
This time, we tell the story of a 35-year-old Filipino caregiver. Two years after arriving in Israel and working as a caregiver, he unexpectedly collapsed and was soon after hospitalized. His doctors quickly realized he was dying, and suggested calling his wife back in the Philippines and inviting her to say goodbye. His employer’s family sought to help him see his wife one final time, but what they did not expect is the procedural difficulties they would tackle along the way. It appears the Israeli authorities asked them to pay a 100,000 NIS guarantee before they allow her entrance to Israel. With help from Kav LaOved and the Israeli media, she was eventually allowed in Israel before her husband’s death. Click here for the full story [in Hebrew].
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Kav LaOved – Workers' Hotline
Protecting workers' rights
Continue helping us show workers they are not alone in their fight for just employment! A monthly donation to Kav LaOved will assist workers in standing up for their rights throughout the year.
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All donations will allow "Kav LaOved" to help workers get their rights at work and the money taken from them by their employers. Even a fixed contribution of 10 NIS per month. To donate by direct debit bank or credit card deposit contribution click here. Association account: Bank Hapoalim branch 781 Account 431095 in the name "Kav LaOved". To send a check to the offices of the association via mail: Kav LaOved PO Box 2319 ​​Tel Aviv 61022
Donations to Kav LaOved within Israel are income tax deductible under Section 46. Tax-deductible donations from abroad, by New Israel Fund. For more info: hagar@kavlaoved.org.il
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