DEFENCE IN IMMIGRANT WORKER SCANDAL

The El Mundo daily newspaper reported last week that the Defence Ministry is employing immigrants without contracts at its bases in Afghanistan through local temping comapnies. It referred specifically to immigrants from the Philippines who are mainly employed to do kitchen and cleaning work. The newspaper also reported huge discrepancies in the wages paid to Spanish, Philippine and other foreign and local workers. It said a Spanish kitchen worker earns €3,571 a month, a Philippine gets €400, a Rumanian €1,150 and a local man, €735. When Defence Minister Carme Chacón visited the Spanish bases in Afghanistan in April, the Philippine workers gave her a soft toy for the baby she was expecting at the time. She has ordered an investigation into the matter.

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