4th July, 2013 Justice for Cleaners Independence Day
The Latin American Commnity Marches for its Rights
40% of Latin Americans workers have experienced workplace abuse in the UK. 11% are paid below the National Minimum Wage.
Latin Americans in the UK are highly qualified and working in all sectors. However, many take jobs in cleaning, catering and hospitality due to the language barrier. These sectors lack regulations and are characterised by extremely poor working conditions: many are employed casually or on a temporary basis, with no entitlement to annual leave or sick pay, and with unsocial working hours very early in the morning and late in the evening.
Being in in-work poverty, it is extremely difficult for Latin Americans to access ESOL provision and move up the economic ladder. Stuck in these areas of work, Latin Americans experience downward mobility, disadvantage, and exploitation in the labour market. The latest studies report that:
40% have experienced workplace abuse and exploitation
11% are being paid less than the National Minimum Wage
70%, including the second generation, perceive discrimination as a major barrier to improve their quality of life
In spite of low incomes, only 1 in 5 Latin Americans claim some form of welfare benefit, which is much lower than the London average. This situation translates into poor living conditions and limited access to services: at least one third are sharing their homes/rooms with other families, 1 in 5 are not registered with a GP, and only 4 out of 10 have been to a dentist in the UK (source: No Longer Invisible).